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1st XV - Match centre

Folkestone 1
Beckenham 1
Sat 12 Aug 13:30 - Pre-season Full time

First run-out of the season.

The game was played in three sessions of 30 minutes with rolling substitutes.

FOLKESTONE SQUAD 12 BECKENHAM SQUAD 21
Saturday 12th August 2017 By:- Alan Schofield
A welcome return to rugby was enjoyed by the Folkestone’s supporters to see match against a Beckenham squad who were 5th in Division 2 last season.
Although inexplicably outnumbered 20 players to 30 players there was much to enjoy for the home supporters as players old and new, experienced and inexperienced, showed a lot of positives under the new regime of Darren Molloy as head coach and ‘Woody’ Woodford- the new Director of Rugby.
The game was played in three sessions and whilst The Stones conceded a couple of tries, the second from an interception, the positive from these 30 minutes was the home team’s tackling. Pinned down in their own half by a brisk breeze and a series of attacks from a lively and fit Beckenham team – there was spirit that said ‘None Shall Pass’ - and that was maintained throughout the whole match.
It was great to see John Eustace, Chris Petley, Scott Stewart and Thomas Snare back again creating problems, but then we admired the youth and talent of Callum Guy at scrum half and Callum Gibson – young, and even bigger than last year.
The second session saw Folkestone in full sail with the wind behind them as Beckenham had to perform the same role in hard defence as Folkestone in the first session. Not enough to prevent tries from Thomo Murray, after a fast run through the centre, converted by Jon Morton. Alex Box also scored after the forwards heaved the larger Beckenham pack 15 metres in full reverse and over their own line. But, albeit briefly, Beckenham had shown their own power in similar fashion to pushover for their own touch down.
The third session saw the two teams equally matched – but Beckenham might like to ponder their adverse penalty count that, had Folkestone been adroit enough to take advantage of these, could – in a league game have given Folkestone many more points. Half of them were wasted apparently because there was no plan.
Nevertheless, Folkestone will know from this pre-season outing their general game pattern and effort bodes well for the season ahead. They will have been dissatisfied with their line out and perhaps some of their tactics, in windy conditions, may need to be reviewed. It was noticeable that Folkestone in defence, but in possession, found territory hard to gain – solid as they were. Whereas Beckenham in the same situation were able to create opportunities that produced good territorial gains. I wonder why?
With a full squad (hopefully) for next week’s match at Broadstairs against the formidable Thanet Wanderers – there will be more to enjoy and admire. Whatever happens, it’s better than cricket, golf or athletics!
A final note of appreciation must be given to Glenn Foreman, who as acting ball boy, performed notably in spite of the provocation by James Lunnun – who deliberately and continuously tried kicking the ball over the fence towards the quarry. But the committee might also contemplate Pam Petley’s preference to scrumping blackberries rather than paying attention to the game. Hmmm!

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