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Match Report: Fareham Heathens v Romsey 23.03.2024

March 25, 2024

Match Report: Fareham Heathens v Romsey 23.03.2024

 Romsey lose 13-28
 Match report courtesy of Eric Bailey

Penultimate match of the season ends in defeat

Romsey travelled to highflying Fareham knowing that they were in for a tough test against a side in second place in the league. The first 10 minutes were fairly even with Fareham threatening once or twice but wasting an overlap by opting to kick. The home side then gave away the first of many penalties just within kicking range but with the strong wind blowing Jim Lamont was unable to convert. Soon afterwards Fareham offended again and this time Lamont made no mistake giving Romsey a three point lead.

Romsey had been tackling ferociously but suddenly a couple of missed tackles let Fareham in for a school behind the posts which was duly converted giving the home side a 7 : 3 lead. Undaunted Romsey came back strongly and after a great run down the wing by Ollie Soundy, taken on by a couple of other players, Romsey almost reached the line but unfortunately knocked on just short of the line.
To add insult to injury a wild pass by Romsey allowed Fareham to intercept and although initially thwarted, they soon crossed for a second try which was also converted, extending their lead to 14 : 3. The visitors hit back immediately and from a line out on the Fareham 5 metre line a superb catch and ferocious drive saw hooker Ben Hoad bundled over for Romsey’ first try which went unconverted leaving the score at 14 : 8.

The second half started with Fareham having the benefit of the strong wind and Romsey supporters feared the worst. However Romsey surprised everyone by taking the game to Fareham, retaining possession for long periods during which they were held up over the line and unable to ground the ball. Eventually the home side managed to pin Romsey back with a long kick which Romsey thought they had touched down but the ball squirted forwards and was pounced on by a Fareham player following up to score. An easy conversion from in front of the posts took the score to 21 : 8 to the hosts.

Adding insult to injury, an error by the Romsey fullback, who slipped whilst. fielding a long kick, saw a Fareham player intercept his attempted pass and score a soft try under the posts which was easily converted to give the hosts a flattering 28 : 8 lead. However Romsey were not finished and spent a further long period in the opponents 22m area and scored an unconverted try leaving the final score at 28: 13 to Fareham.

Romsey can be very proud that, although missing some key players, they took the game to their opponents and might have won with the scoreline not truly representing the run of play. Romsey’s final game of the season takes place at Ganger Farm Leisure Centre on April 6 against Eastleigh and Romsey hope to maintain their competitive fifth place in the league.