Brentwood 32 - 38 Guildford, London and South East Premier Division
By ALAN C. HUDSON
Brentwood fall just short after great second half comeback
Brentwood lost a pulsating match to a late brace of tries on Saturday, a game they had seen them overturn a 14 point deficit at halftime to lead by 6 points with 5 minutes to go in a fantastic spectacle of running rugby and powerful forward play.
With the injury list getting ever longer, they made a number of changes to team with Dan Suttle coming for the injured Matt Whaley and Tom Lucas-Roast making his second start of the season at flyhalf with Bradley Burr moving to outside centre in place of Josh Stannard. Front row partners Tijde Visser & Joel Bevans-Royston also missed the game through injury so young Chandler Garnett started with Anthony Sherwood making a welcome return the first team squad after a number of years. Ed Hornby started at fullback with Tom Simpson starting on the bench.
An entertaining game throughout with both teams playing some lovely rugby, it was Guildford who showed the early promise and scored a well worked try on 8 minutes, 2 more followed soon after and Brentwood were forced to defend for long periods in their own 22. When Guildford failed to capitalise on another great chance Brentwood seized the opportunity to turn the tables and began to dominate the breakdown, strong carries from Louis Payne and Dan Suttle put Brentwood in a great position and James White saw Burr unmarked out wide, the pass was quick and accurate and Burr touched down for his first try of the season. More good play from Payne, Ben Amato put Charlie Wilkinson into space and he carried deep in the opposition half, 2 phases later Lucas-Roast danced past 2 defenders to put Billy Aldous under the posts for a well deserved try. With the score now 12-19 Brentwood looked to put further points on the board but, to their credit, Guildford defended well and scored a try of their own just on half time.
H/T Brentwood 12-26 Guildford.
Brentwood went straight on the attack from the kick off in the second half forcing a kickable penalty which Burr converted, 5 minutes later Simpson cut through the line to set up another attack, Payne again with the big carry and Guildford were lucky to escape a yellow card for a blatant penalty; Burr added the 3 points and Brentwood were inching closer. A fine move soon after with good hands from Adam Thomas and Burr put Ed Hornby free down the wing and he cut inside 2 players to score under the posts. Anthony Sherwood marked his return with a powerful carry and touched down near the posts to put the hosts ahead for the first time in the game. More chances came and went to really put the game out of Guildford's reach and the visitors took advantage of Brentwood's failure to extend the lead. They gained territory through silly penalties, eventually forcing a penalty try to go 1 point ahead just on 80 minutes, Burr managed to rip the ball back in a tackle to set up one more attack but a handling error gifted the ball to the opposition winger who ran it back unopposed. The conversion was missed so Brentwood took 2 points from the game which is the least they deserved after a memorable second half performance.
Brentwood had Guildford on the ropes deep into the second half and should have come away with the full 5 points but Guildford dug deep to grab the game late. Both teams contributed to a fast paced, full blooded game that was dominated at different times by the two sides. Uncontested scrums were needed from the 70th minute which nullified a Brentwood strength at that time and gave Guildford some stability, something they took advantage of just before forcing the late penalty try. This should not detract from a well contested, even match that could have gone either way.
Team: Garnett, Payne, Mcmillan, Killington, Suttle, Aldous, Bassenger, Amato (c), White, Lucas-Roast, Wilkinson, Thomas, Burr, Batty, Hornby Subs: Sherwood, Wells, Simpson
A week off to patch up the wounded before the visit of league leaders Wimbledon on the 17th November, for what will be another tough match.