Wimbledon 34 v Amersham & Clifton 17
National League 3 South
Saturday’s match against Amersham was not the walk in the park Wimbledon clearly expected – in fact there were times when it was hard to tell which team is bottom of the league table, as winless Amersham are, and which is tied top.
Although Wimbledon dominated territory for the first 20 minutes, their finishing (or lack of it) was poor and all they had to show for their dominance was a single Bryan Croke penalty goal.
Then Amersham made their first visit into Wimbledon’s half and immediately levelled the score through a McDonald penalty conversion. The visitors continued to occupy Dons’ territory and only the bounce of the ball prevented them scoring a deserved try as half time approached.
Play moved quickly back to Amersham’s 22, where loose ball from a sloppy Dons attack was snaffled by flanker Roy Godfrey who, not for first time this season, bullied his way over the try line, taking two defenders with him, and Dons’ blushes were spared when Croke’s conversion gave them an almost respectable 10-3 half time lead.
Fortunately for their supporters, ten minutes after the re-start the real Wimbledon appeared; quicker ball by the forwards and some familiar fluent back play yielded four good tries in fifteen minutes. Fleet-footed wing Tommy Moore got the first and centre Jack Reville gathered Croke’s excellent chip ahead to run in the second, converted by scrum half Rhys Morgan. Morgan himself then made a fine break, the ball quickly re-cycled and whisked acrossfield where wing Josh Charles outpaced the defence to get the third. It was Morgan again who got the final try; slick passing from Moore on the right wing saw the ball move right across to the scrum half out on the left, and he jinked through three players to score under posts for Croke to convert easily.
But all credit to a combative Amersham. Despite being out of it at 34-3 down they came back strongly to boss they remaining ten minutes and score two good tries, the first after Wimbledon handed possession to Amersham’s wing, whose fine run ended in a ruck 5m out from which flanker Winpenny barged over. Then with the final play of the game the visitor’s prop Harland burst over for their second, McDonald converting both.
At home next week Wimbledon will need to revert to their norm against high scoring Westcombe Park, who sit just two points below them in the league table.