H&B beaten by new leaders

Ben Campbell
Ben Campbell

Hastings & Bexhill’s three-match winning run came to an end with a 17-12 loss away to new Kent One leaders Cranbrook on Saturday.

H&B knew that a dominant first 10 minutes was vital; instead they leaked a well-executed try in the opening five minutes.

A powerful H&B drive from a Jimmy Adams catch at a lineout crossed Cranbrook’s line for a Paul Sandeman unconverted touchdown after 30 minutes.

Cranbrook, who looked dangerous on the breakout, stretched their lead with a penalty. In the second half, Ben Campbell struck with a well-judged interception and footrace from his 22 for a two-point lead.

An H&B attack was turned over in Cranbrook’s half and the hosts broke out for a simple score under the posts, retaking the lead at 17-12. For the final 15 minutes H&B raised their game, laying siege to Cranbrook’s line without reward.

Elsewhere, Rye suffered their first home defeat of the season in Sussex One with a 53-3 reverse at the hands of table-topping Burgess Hill. See Friday’s Observers for full reports on both matches.

Standings (played-points) - Kent One: 1 Cranbrook 7-24, 2 Sittingbourne 7-22, 3 HASTINGS & BEXHILL 7-22, 4 King’s College Hospital 8-22, 5 Old Gravesendians 7-21, 6 Shooters Hill 7-20, 7 Dartfordians 7-20, 8 HSBC 7-14, 9 Beccehamian 7-14, 10 Southwark Lancers 8-11, 11 Whitstable 8-5.

Sussex One: 1 Burgess Hill 8-37, 2 Eastbourne 8-33, 3 Chichester III 8-30, 4 RYE 8-26, 5 Holbrook 8-22, 6 Seaford 8-19, 7 Brighton II 8-16, 8 Newick 8-11, 9 Lewes II 8-10, 10 Haywards Heath II 6-6, 11 Hove III 7-5, 12 Midhurst 7-3.