Leaders H&B romp to 69-0 victory

Hastings & Bexhill and Snowdown CW battle for possession. Picture by Simon Newstead

Hastings & Bexhill and Snowdown CW battle for possession. Picture by Simon Newstead

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Hastings & Bexhill Rugby Club certainly gave its supporters plenty to be merry about over the festive season with a dominant win on Saturday.

H&B demolished bottom-of-the-table Snowdown CW 69-0 with 11 tries in an excellent display of open and attacking rugby to sit top of Kent One going into 2017.

Snowdown retain possession under pressure from H&B. Picture by Simon Newstead

Snowdown retain possession under pressure from H&B. Picture by Simon Newstead

The starting line-up included the fit-again John Hanagarth at number eight and Harry Walker returned at full-back. Both made excellent contributions to the emphatic result on a lovely winter's afternoon at Ark William Parker Academy.

H&B winger Tim Sills scored a hat-trick of tries, all the result of flowing moves with the ball moving throughout the H&B attack in a fine display of handling skills.

Walker, as always, tackled well and launched several devastating sorties into the visitors' defence, twice crossing the line for well-taken tries.

Veteran winger Ben Campbell also scored twice as the ball was smoothly fed out to him from the dominant forwards, while scrum-half Eliot Parry channelled his undoubted talent into scoring a brace of second half tries.

Chaz Ackerley is tackled with Harry Walker waiting for the offload. Picture by Simon Newstead

Chaz Ackerley is tackled with Harry Walker waiting for the offload. Picture by Simon Newstead

Hanagarth stretched his long frame to score near the posts for Bruce Steadman to convert.

There was a great deal about the home display to excite the spectators and some almost farcical moments to amuse the touchline.

Steadman took full advantage of an unfortunate incident involving the Snowdown winger's attempt to keep the ball alive. The number 14 leaped high into the air to field a well-struck penalty only to tap the ball into Steadman's hands, giving the fly-half a clear run to the line and he converted his own try.

Steadman was successful with seven kicks at goal in total, several of which were well-struck efforts from the touchline.

Harry Walker about to go over in the corner to score H&B's third try. Picture by Simon Newstead

Harry Walker about to go over in the corner to score H&B's third try. Picture by Simon Newstead

H&B coach Chris Brooks introduced replacements Tom Waring, Paul Sandeman and Jacob McDonough during the second half.

Each made a telling contribution, especially Sandeman, who set Parry up for the last try. He burst through the visitors' centres to set the number nine on his way to the line.

Brooks was obviously delighted with the performance of his team, which played with strength, speed and skill; the result of all those cold evenings on the training ground.

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