Old Colfeians emphatically won the local derby bragging rights with this four try to one victory at Broad Walk on Saturday. From the kick off they were better organised and more committed and fully merited their victory, taking Park’s unbeaten start to the season into the bargain.

For the first half-hour Colfes gained and held control of possession and territory, scoring two tries created by line-out dominance and forward rumbles and apart from a lightning break from Freddie Naitaka Park were unable to get the ball or keep it. In the ten minutes before the break Charlton had the chances to get back into the game, in particular with several five metre scrums where, had they held the ball a little longer they appeared to be driving over the line, but Colfes emerged unscathed.

The second half was more evenly balanced, but whereas the visitors made the most of their field position Charlton got to the line on several occasions without going the extra yard/inch. A penalty from Joe Simpson in the first minute gave some false hope, but Park were still unable to defend their line with the same accuracy as their visitors who created extra men to score two more tries. Finally, as the home side threw the ball about, Scobie Ratubulavu went over as a consolation.

Colfes were prepared for Park’s game-plan but they also played with great discipline. Charlton, on the other hand, had a collection of players who had not really had enough time to organise. The score could (should?) have been closer – Park certainly nearly scored several times – but they desperately need the return of some of their experienced absent players. Nobody gave up and the answer is to understand when the oppo plays better and we have an off-day. It happens.

 

Other than the result it was a lovely day for the club, with a large crowd, lunch for 90 and the gathering of the London One winning side and the return to the club after 25 years of Adey Gill, Gordon Thomson, Neville Whitter, John Field et al. The return of rugby and the crowd was the main story.

These fabulous photos come from Ian Carter.