Close game but HRFC don't get semi-final place
This Middlesex Vase game was to be the third time this season that Hanwell have faced Twickenham IV's.
It was no surprise that this game would be another close affair, with only 6 points separating the two sides in the first two games.
The game began under a beautiful blue sky and with conditions favouring a running game, it was no surprise that both sides attempted to do so.
The first try of the game came from the host's bulldozing outside centre. Picking up the ball just outside the Hanwell 22, he broke a couple of tackles to score in the corner. Although it was a sunny winters day, there was also a strong breeze which made kicking difficult and it was no surprise that the Twickenham conversion hit the upright rather than go over.
The score seemingly woke up the visitors who began to put some phases together that led to Twickenham illegally halting the Hanwell attack. A tap penalty five metres out, was popped to prop Peter Nolan who crashed through the defensive line to score.
With the conversion missed the game restarted with the scores 5 a piece.
Once again it was the number 13 from the home side who was causing Hanwell problems and a great run got the hosts into a scoring position and they took their chance well to take the lead for a second time. The conversion sailed wide however, to give the hosts a 10-5 lead.
Hanwell again fought back with centre David Lowney having try disallowed despite there being no obvious reason why - a fact noted by the Twickenham players. However a smart lineout move deep within the Twickenham 22. Hooker, John Bodman found Lebby Anafu with the throw, which was brought down and driven towards the line by the pack. Breaking off and taking contact pushed the forwards closer to the line. Quick ball was fed to fly half Paul Doherty, who was tackled just short of the line. John Bodman picked the ball and went around the corner and recycled quick ball for the backs to get the ball through the hands to Dan Horner to score his second try in consecutive games.
With the conversion missed the teams went into the break with the scores 10-10.
The second half began with a blast from Twickenham. Before the visitors could catch their breath, the home side powered over from a 5 metre scrum to take a 15-10 lead in the game.
Things became scruffy for a while, with lots of scrums having to be reset as the hookers battled things out with neither really getting on top of the other.
The game looked to be over when the visitors secured a scrum in their own 22 but failed to clear, allowing the hosts to score and extend their lead to 20-15.
Hanwell have developed a strong never-give-up attitude and this was evident as the side went through numerous phases - utilising both the forwards and backs, to free scrum half Matt Pickersgill to score his side's third try of the game.
With just one minute left on the clock, Hanwell received the restart deep on their 5 metre line and patiently started to work the ball through phases of play that allowed them to edge up the field and deep into the home side's half.
The game ended though, when Hanwell were penalised for going off their feet and Twickenham kicked the ball dead.
28th January 2015