Wake-up call for H&B

Action from Hastings & Bexhill's game against Old Gravesendians
Action from Hastings & Bexhill's game against Old Gravesendians

Hastings & Bexhill’s defeat last weekend was a wake-up call according to head coach Kevin Smith.

Having won its opening Kent One game 46-0 at home to Old Gravesendians a fortnight ago, the rugby club was beaten 28-8 away to Beccehamian in its first away match.

Smith said: “I knew we were going to have a bump in the road, but I was surprised that we basically didn’t perform for the first half. We made mistakes in our own quarter and you can’t do that at this level.

“On the first half performance it was almost like when I arrived at the club (in 2011). The players didn’t hit it running, didn’t get into the game and the other side had a pretty good lead at half time which was never overtaken.

“We did play marginally better in the second half, but we had too much of a mountain to climb. They were worth their 20 points (margin of victory) even though we gifted them three tries.”

Smith was expecting a positive reaction from his players in training this week as he seeks to put things right in time for H&B’s next match away to Southwark Lancers on Saturday October 6.

Rye Rugby Club, meanwhile, can make it a hat-trick of wins to start the season by getting the better of Newick tomorrow (Saturday).

The New Roaders have really hit the ground running by seeing off Brighton II (19-13) and Lewes II (19-5) - both on home soil - in Sussex Division One.

They take to the road for the first time in the campaign with a trip to a Newick outfit which has lost both its games so far. Rye are one of five teams in the 12-strong division to have won their first two matches.