Wimbledon 13 – 24 Redingensians
It will come
At 0-14 after just eight minutes it looked as though Wimbledon could be in for a bit of a pasting by fourth-placed Redingensians, but then at the first scrum the pack showed they were at least a match for their opposition and the new line-up in the backs (the tenth new line-up in as many matches) began to find their feet. Winning decent possession and entering the opposition 22 for the first time ten minutes into the game, lock Shawn Renwick took clean lineout ball and with the help of his pack drove over for a try in the corner. An excellent touchline conversion by James Doe made it 7-14. But Redingensians, exploiting their strength at the lineout, which had generated their first two tries, soon powered over for a third from 10m out.
From then on though, until the 76th minute, when the visitors produced a carbon copy of their third try, to cruelly deny Dons a losing bonus point, their was little to choose between the two teams and almost all the play for that entire period took place between the two 22’s, with neither team able to breach the other’s defence.
The welcome return from injury of scrum half Rhys Morgan, no. 8 Dan Laventure and fullback Matt Gilbert, plus impressive performances from the new boys – centre Sam O’Leary-Blade in particular – and a strong replacement bench, clearly boosted the whole team’s confidence and for an hour of the match they played some of their best rugby this season and came within an ace of scoring a major upset in the league.
But as captain Josh Bayford said after the game, as the injury list dwindles, it’ll come.
Next week, another tough fixture for Wimbledon, away to league leaders Chinnor. If they play as they did against Redingensians though, it’ll be an interesting match.