Henley 27-20 Bury St. Edmunds
It was always going to be a close contest between two evenly matched sides. Bury started strongly and should have scored in the second minute, however a knock-on from scrum half Harry Anderson-Brown gave Henley a lucky reprieve. The visitors quickly got the ball back following a Henley error and took the lead with Anderson-Brown burrowing over to make amends for his earlier mistake. Henley battled back with Jake Albon crashing over following an excellent driving maul. George Jackson slotted the conversion to take the scores level.
The visitors deservedly retook the lead on 15 minutes when a Henley defensive lineout was overthrown. Sam Bixby was the quickest to pounce on the loose ball with Honey converting to make the score 14-7.
The Hawks started to get a foothold in the game with Butler and Perry looking dangerous. A lineout steal from Albon put the Hawks back in the visitors 22 and a superb Butler grubber kick saw Jack Robinson quickest to the ball to dot down. Jackson converted from just inside the touchline to level the scores at 14-14.
Five minutes before the break saw the Hawks take the lead for the first time, a Jackson penalty taking the score to 17-14 at half time.
The second half began in a similar vein to the first with Bury on the attack. A monstrous Fraser Honey penalty drew the scores level before a similarly long-range effort saw the visitors retake the lead 20-17. The last twenty minutes saw the Hawks play some excellent rugby. They patiently went through the phases before the outstanding David Hyde crashed over from close range. Jackson’s conversion saw the Hawks go 24-20 up.
Play was held up for 10 minutes on 75 minutes with Bury replacement, Sean Davis stretchered off with a neck injury. When the game restarted, Henley won a penalty which saw Jackson kicking the Hawks to into a 27-20 lead. The last few minutes saw the Hawks hold on with a very solid defensive display which repelled any potential Bury threat. Overall, it was a good performance against a side that have been playing with real confidence. The Hawks now go into a rest week which is well earned following two hard fought victories.
Next up is Canterbury away on the 25th November followed by Clifton at home on the 2ndDecember, kick-off 3pm.
Tries: Albon 8, Robinson 29, Hyde 65
Conversions: Jackson 8, 29, 65
Penalties: Jackson 37, 80
Bury St. Edmunds
Tries: Anderson-Brown 4, Bixby 15
Conversions: Honey 4, 15
Penalties: Honey 42, 52
Referee: Charles Gayther
Man of the Match: David Hyde – Henley
Hawks: O’Neill, Andre, Awcock, Perry, Robinson, Butler, Jackson, Primett, Wunder (Emery 62), Morris, Clements, Albon, Hyde, Bell, Lowe (Tibbatts 66)
Replacements: Emery, Cook, Tibbatts, Haynes, Will
Bury St. Edmunds: Lord, Snelling, Kohler (Osborne 45), Rouse, Corcoran, Honey, Anderson-Brown (Harrison 75), Smith, King (Edison 62) Coutts (Davis 40), Scholes, Bixby, Mitchell, Stapleton, Edison (Stanley 40)
Replacements: Stanley, Davis, Switherbank, Osborne, Harrison
Photos by Steve Karpa