HERTS/MIDDLESEX DIVISION THREE: St Nicholas Old Boys 10 Hackney 23
LEAGUE leaders Hackney proved just too strong for battling St Nicholas Old Boys who slipped to their second successive league defeat.
Saints started well in front of a large home crowd, who had come to pay their tributes to former chairman Richard Bird MBE, who sadly passed away earlier in the year and club members raised an impressive £1,100 for charity in his memory.
Wingers Dave Howard and Matt Sills threatened the Hackney defence a number of times in the early exchanges but several penalties eventually allowed Hackney an easy kick to take a 3-0 lead.
A slick move ended with the Hackney full-back scoring the opening try of the game and he then added the conversion to take his side 10-0 ahead, before home fly half Ben Tubb narrowed the gap with a penalty kick just before half-time.
Hackney's well-drilled line-out and scrum meant the SNOBs backs were starved of decent ball and despite committed defence by the home side Hackney eventually extended their lead with a superb individual try from their fly half, who ran from deep in his own territory before combining with his full back and looping round to score in the corner.
Second row forward Ben Prescott embarked on a rampaging run to keep SNOBs in touch, with scrum half Barry Hall adding the extra two points to pull the score back to 17-10, but Hackney scored their third try in the final minutes of the game to record a 23-10 victory and leave SNOBs with nothing to show for a decent performance. [25a0] Captain Joe Oliveira led from the front with an early try as SNOBs second team defeated Bank of England III 30-23 in a Merit Table fixture.
Stand-in fly half Steve Roth added a second score soon after but despite enjoying the majority of the possession and territory the Mitres found it difficult to penetrate the Bank defences and they only held a narrow 13-10 lead at the break.
Chris Creak extended the lead with a try soon after the restart and despite a late resurgence from the visitors, debut tries from centres AlexHorn and Graham Brooks secured the second team's first league win of the season. They play SODAM on Saturday.
The Ickenham-based club is looking for more players - see their website www.snobrfc.co.uk for more details.