Leaders H&B make it a magnificent seven

Hastings & Bexhill scrap for possession against Southwark Lancers. Picture courtesy Karen Walker

Hastings & Bexhill scrap for possession against Southwark Lancers. Picture courtesy Karen Walker

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With an array of excellent tries from forwards and backs, Hastings & Bexhill Rugby Club chalked up another convincing win on Saturday.

The 48-5 victory at home to Southwark Lancers extended H&B's winning run to seven matches and kept them top of the Kent One table.

Southwark, who travelled to the game by train, fielded a team filled with very big men, but were no match for an H&B side full of tackles, speed, strength and flair.

H&B took only three minutes top open their account. A flowing move through the backs stretched the visitors' defence and Chas Ackerley passed the ball back inside for Mark Piotrowski to crash over the line. Tom Waring converted.

A pushover scrum gave Piotrowski his second try of the day and again Waring kicked the conversion.

Tim Sills ran in the third try under the posts after the forwards won the ball in a set scum and fed it out to the winger, who surged through the Southwark defence. Waring's boot made the score 21-0.

Hastings & Bexhill and Southwark Lancers battle it out at Ark William Parker Academy. Picture courtesy Karen Walker

Hastings & Bexhill and Southwark Lancers battle it out at Ark William Parker Academy. Picture courtesy Karen Walker

The try of the day came from Jake Stinson. The forwards won the ball on the halfway line to put the winger away and he ran more than 45 metres to secure the fourth try bonus point try before half time.

During the interval coach Chris Brooks brought on Chris Stern for his first game in three weeks, replacing promising youngster Fraser McManus. Early in the second half, the fit-again Kit Claughton came on for Chas Ackerley and Steve McManus swapped for Thomas "Wookie" Vincent at prop.

Stinson extended the lead with a well-executed try. The H&B forwards controlled the play in midfield and released the backs, who passed the ball along the line and the winger completed the move wide out on the right.

Harry Walker, back in his usual position of full-back, fielded a long clearance and used his lightning speed to burst through the Southwark pack before feeding Ben Campbell to score the sixth try.

Hastings & Bexhill's defence was again in resolute form against Southwark Lancers. Picture courtesy Karen Walker

Hastings & Bexhill's defence was again in resolute form against Southwark Lancers. Picture courtesy Karen Walker

Fraser McManus returned to the fray as a replacement for Piotrowski, who suffered a nasty cut to his right eye. Sills scored his second try of the game as the forwards again won the ball from a lineout to release the backs and the left winger went over in the corner.

H&B defended resolutely throughout and Southwark never looked like scoring until Paul Sandeman was yellow carded for the cumulative team offence of not releasing the ball in the tackle. Southwark used their man advantage in the scrum to force the ball over for a consolation try.

From the restart H&B were immediately on the attack. The forwards won the ball in a maul and set up Claughton, who sold the visitors' defence a dummy to score a try which Waring converted to round things off.

The H&B supporters and management left the ground full of praise for their team's convincing win against a club which has caused them problems at times in the past.

Hastings & Bexhill captain Jimmy Adams wraps up a Southwark Lancers opponent. Picture courtesy Karen Walker

Hastings & Bexhill captain Jimmy Adams wraps up a Southwark Lancers opponent. Picture courtesy Karen Walker

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