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Cobham 1st XV win Surrey Trophy Final

Update - 1st XV win Surrey Trophy in tense battle with S&E...

1st Surrey Trophy 2012

Both teams had lost in their respective previous Surrey trophy final appearances but Cobham went into this Surrey final at Imber Court justifiable favourites, having defeated Sutton & Epsom on two previous occasions this season.

The Cobham line up for this game included Adam Watkins at 12, who scored a try in the previous round and a return for Alex Crane.  Dave and Luke Flower continued the half back pairing.

Sutton & Epsom started this game showing just how much they wanted to win and end their season on a high. After some early sparing number 13, Andy Nichols intercepted just inside Cobham's half to run in for an early try which scrum half Murray converted. 7-0. After 13 minutes that wasn’t in the script for  Cobham  and losing number 4 Alex Crane, to a shoulder injury shortly thereafter, didn’t help the cause either.  Jules Kunkler substituted wearing a duplicate number 1 shirt, obviously to confuse.

The game then settled more into a halfway tussle with both sides putting in some big tackles. Jack Davison and Dave Baker to the fore, Matt Whittaker for Sutton & Epsom. Cobham took advantage of the scrum domination by creating an opportunity for new boy Watkins to score in the corner after 34 minutes, 7-5 and continuing to maintain pressure Luke Flower scored and converted a virtuoso try just before half time 7-12.

There was some relief amongst the Cobham supporters that Cobham had completed 40 minutes and were in front but it was clear this was going to be a closer encounter than previous.

The second half started with Cobham continuing to dominate up front and there was consistent strong running from the back of the scrum by Van Niekerk and Davison. S& E lost their prop Gary Nash to the sin bin and soon after Van Niekerk showed his footwork to its best advantage and controlled a scrum to enable him to secure Cobham’s third try 7-17 after 50 minutes.  Although Flower missed the conversion, with Cobham playing more consistently, that should score line should have been enough of a lead to secure the game.

However Sutton and Epsom looked to be a completely different side to the team who had lost at the Memorial grounds two weeks earlier and the next 15 minutes saw some of the best defence Cobham have shown all season. It wasn’t enough however to avoid first, a penalty 10-17 and then a second try in the corner by Nichols narrowing the lead to 15-17 with ten minutes remaining.

A well taken Luke Flower penalty relieved the pressure to 15-20 and although there was more defence needed as Sutton & Epsom still looked to come back Cobham held on to win.

There was a palpable relief at the final whistle for the supporters that Cobham had edged this final match of the 2011/12 season and achieved their first Surrey Trophy and it will not only have given the players satisfaction but the back room team of Dave Silver, Martin Green, Tom Schofield and Chris Melton without whom none of this would be possible.

For photos click here

Team:

1.Alexander 2.Gibbons 3.Nunn 4.Crane 5.Davison B 6.Davison J 7.Baker 8. Van Niekerk 9.Flower D 10.Flower L 11.Bates 12.Watkins 13.Fisher 14.Moreton 15.Cowell ( Captain)

 

Subs

 

Joyce

Kunkler

Smyth

Gillott

Saunders

Gravier

Fitzpatrick

 

Tries  Watkins, FlowerL ,Van Niekerk

 

Conversion Flower L

Penalty Flower L