Blues and Tottonians Tie 29-29 in Season’s Final Fixture
Brighton got off the mark in the 6th minute when Rob Fogerty in trade mark fashion smashed over the line out wide.
The conversion was struck wide leaving the score at 5-0. The game was being fought evenly in the midfield until Brighton’s top tackler of the season Joe Hoare was sent to the sin bin in the 14th minute. This visitors took advantage of the additional man and ran in two tires in quick succession. 1 out of the 2 conversion was successful as Joe Hoare returned to the pitch with the score at 5-12. Skipper Joel Forward was tip tackled off the ball and dumped on his head. The referee had followed the ball and did not see the incident so was unable to act upon it. Joel Forward was substituted off and was unable to return to the field of play, a frustrating was for the captain and talisman to enter the summer break having started every game for the last 2 seasons. Stand in fly half Joel Forward was replaced by hooker Adam Salvage causing a reshuffle in the team with Rob Fogerty moving to 10 and Joe Hoare slotting in to the centres. The Blues were able to have the last say of the half when Ben Herbe added to his 6 tries this season with yet another 2 yard run in. Herbe was on Kicking duties in place of Lewis Evans and added the extras to draw The Blues level going into the break.
Brighton kicked on from where they left off. Strong runs from Onke Nesi and Rob Fogerty put The Blues on the front foot, a quick offload to Joe Hoare allowed him to charge through and cross the white wash for his 5th try this season. Herbe was on target with the boot and edged Brighton in front 19-12. The second half was a real ding dong battle between the teams and made for a great spectacle. Shortly after The Blues try it was the Tottonians second row who trundled over for a try, a well struck conversion drew the score level again 19-19. Tottonians fly half kicked well all day and when the visitors had run out of attacking options he slotted a long range drop goal from nowhere to put his side ahead 19-22.
Brighton brought on some fresh legs in the shape of Tom Lightfoot who replaced Jack Thomas in the back row. Thomas’s face had be rearranged and you would be excused for thinking he had borrow Mike Tindal’s nose (pictures can be seen on our facebook group please like to page to get media updates). Brighton were full of spirit and with 13 minutes left on the clock Brighton’s war horse James Trevis carried hard and crashed through tackles touch down for his 3rd try of the campaign. Trevis has really settled into the second row this season adding experience and bulk to the pack, his try put Brighton ahead 24-22. Tottonians came back at The Blues by moving the ball wide with their outside centre out pacing the covering defence, this try and conversion moved Totts back in front by 5 points with 10 minutes on the clock.
Tottonians were reduced to 14 men for the closing stages of the game as Brighton looked to try and snatch victory. Blues were able to cross over the line through the power of Rob Fogerty who touched down to secure his status as top try scorer for the season with 9. Fogerty’s season is not quite finished as he has been selected into the London & South East U20 final squad of 23 to participate in the England Counties under 20’s selection this weekend in Nottingham. We wish Rob the best of luck. Ben Herbe has the pressure conversion from out wide to clinch victory however it agonisingly hit the upright and bounced out (video can be seen on our twitter feed @brightonblues please follow us to keep in touch with live scores). The final whistle blew and both teams had given it their all. With neither team having anything to play for it was a good game of rugby and a nice way to finish the turbulent season for The Blues.
Supporters Man of the Match
Adam Salvage 3 points
Rob Fogerty 2 points
Onke Nesi 1 point
Match photos taken by Dave Beech and Martin Finch
Huge thanks to our other volunteers the season;
The Dean Family; Ian, Gaynor and Lewis for looking after playing kit
Derek Smith for match videos
Sharon Finch for media updates and twitter feed.
Follow The Blues on Instagram @brightonbluesrugby
Dates for the diary;
Brighton Ball at the Hilton – 13th May
Brighton 7’s tournament - weekend of 22nd July