Following a comprehensive opening win against Maidstone, and with spirits around the club high, OC’s hoped to sign off match day captain and club legend Ed Livett’s 200th career first team appearance with a win. With some of last week’s top performers out, a few returning faces and three new debutants, OC’s were putting out a markedly changed outfit in the first away trip of the season to Crowborough.
Without a cloud in the sky, subdued wind and soft turf underfoot providing perfect conditions for a day of running rugby, this was a great opportunity for OC’s to push on from last week and play their brand of expansive attacking rugby. With a short sharp warm-up the team were ready to go.
Recently promoted and quite the unknown quantity, Crowborough started strongly, dominating early patches of the game. It was evident that the intensity from last week had been left back at home as OC’s were consistently on the losing side of the contact area. Despite Jack Potter pinning the opposition back with some tactical kicking, Crowborough capitalised on their early possession with a succession of first half scores with no return from OC’s. The team went in to half time 17-0 down feeling deflated. A few sterns words in the break and OC’s came out second half strongly with a real intent to bring the game back in to contention. Despite sustained pressure on the Crowborough line, OC’s couldn’t convert this into points.
With time on the clock running out Dele took matters into his own hands and stormed through the Crowborough defense for the OC’s opening try of the match. Shortly after, an excellent line break from Fred Humphreys, with great support work by Ladi and Joe Cobham led to another quick score. However, it was all too little too late as a few break away tries from Crowborough saw out the game and take their first win of the season.
Congratulations to Ed on his 200th appearance for the club, and Conor Gray Simba and Ryan Napper on debut, not the result we wanted but an amazing achievement regardless. A lot to work on in training this week with a huge game against Gravesend at home on Saturday.