Improved performance against Henley brings some Christmas and  New Year cheer for Barnes RFC

Improved performance against Henley brings some Christmas and New Year cheer for Barnes RFC

By Michael Whitfield
24 December 2018
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Barnes 1st XV lost 17-24 to Henley in the last game of 2018, but can take some heart from a greatly improved performance from the Canterbury game

With Christmas now over, here's to and a Barnes rugby-full 2019!
Michael "Rhino" Whitfield

In the last game of the year, Barnes looked to halt a losing run of four games against Henley at Barn Elms but went down in the end 17-24.

Like many of the games we have lost this season, it could have and should have been different.

Barnes started poorly and were 0-14 down inside the first fifteen minutes. After twenty minutes we woke up and Robbie Martey scored, Tom O’Toole converting, to peg back the visitors to 7-14. Barnes then had their best period of the game, Josh Hammett slotting a penalty and a conversion from Dave Butler’s try, to give Barnes a 17-14 lead at half-time, which looked most unlikely after the first twenty minutes.

Could we continue this pressure on the Hawks and pull off a much-needed win? The answer I am afraid was no.

Again. we started a half poorly, this time a yellow card for Robbie Martey, immediately after the restart put us under pressure from which Henley scored. Barnes added no points in the second half, despite having the opportunities to convert, and again our lineout failed to function effectively. If we sort that out then we will win a lot more games in the second half of the season.

So at the halfway point how are we doing? 5/10 I would say. We are 12th in the National Two Lague South, and really should be a very comfortable mid-table 8th. That we are not is entirely down to us, which means we can, of course, put it right. Started well with a win against the Irish, then lost five on the bounce, then won five on the bounce, then lost five on the bounce.

We now face all of the teams we lost to after that early Irish win so hopefully we will have gone away over Christmas, licked our wounds, and will come back fighting this weekend, when we travel away to Old Albanians, who we lost to at Barnes 24-33, despite dominating the forward battle. it is a 3pm kick off under the lights at OA's.

I know the boys are more than capable of sorting this out and I have total confidence in them, and the coaches doing just that!

Barnes Occies 12 - KCS 8
I didn’t so the Occies proud last week after their magnificent win 12-8 against KCS. So here is a fuller report to celebrate this match, and out brilliant Occies. Last Saturday the Occies welcomed KCS Old Boys 2nd XV to Barn Elms for a re-arranged league and cup doubleheader. The weather was dreadful; cold, wet and windy, but this did not deter the turn out for a big game against the unbeaten league leaders!

With the conditions as they were this was always going to be a low scoring, close game and this is exactly how it turned out. Occies started very strongly, keeping the ball well with big carries and making big yards. A break from Dan Sullivan, and offload to Tom Challis, in support, resulted in a deserved score under the posts.

The defence was epic with KCS rarely troubling us in the first half. In the second half KCS got more into the game, but with the wind at our backs, the Occies were able to kick our way out of trouble.

From a line out from a penalty, the Occies formed a rolling maul, and Georg scored on his last appearance before moving to Switzerland! He will be missed!

KCS scored a try from a five-metre scrum, but the Occies finished the stronger team and were just held up on the line when the final whistle went. This was a fully deserved win against a team who has beaten everyone in their path to date! Occies finish the first half of the season having played 9, won 7 and lost 2. Bring on 2019!

It just remains for me to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas from us all at Barnes RFC.

After a very hectic year for all of us, and with so much angst and conflict in the UK, and all over the world, may we all have a peaceful, loving and relaxing festive period, recharging our batteries to take on 2019 with great gusto.

Have a fantastic break, see you in 2019, and remember that this weekend the 1st XV travel to Old Albanians for a 3pm kick off.

On Sunday the Ladies 1st XV are back in action too, playing Streatham & Croydon Ladies with a 2pm KO.

Then, THE BIG ONE, we have the infamous Vets Lunch on 12th January, hosted by Mark Durden-Smith, followed by a must-win game against Bury St Edmunds.

Rhino x

Michael “Rhino” Whitfield – Chairman Barnes RFC

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