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Home > News > Wimbledon 36 - Dover 12
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Your News Wimbledon 36 - Dover 12

The first sunshine for weeks having seen off the last of the snow, the Wimbledon pitch offered the prospect of some good running rugby and the home team did not disappoint, scoring five fine tries. (And there could have been two or three more had some passes been delivered earlier.) Dover did their bit too, taking advantage of some rare missed tackles to score two good tries of their own during a spirited fightback mid-way through the second half, the first by wing John Foster and the second by centre Brian Ayling, who also converted.

With the packs evenly matched - and the visitor’s rucking especially effective – the harsh dismissal for ten minutes of lock Rich Stevens delayed Dons’ first half domination until the 20th minute, when a pinpoint kick from no.10 Neil Hallett gave centre Dan Brown a clear run in for try no.1, expertly converted by Hallett from the touchline.

Although Dover’s three-quarters got plenty of ball from their forwards they were no match for Dons’ backs and some great inter-play between fullback Myles Stringer and centre Kua Palakua soon produced a try well taken by hooker Charlie Horn to seal a most impressive 1st XV debut. Hallett’s conversion and a penalty moments later brought the half-time score to 17-0.

Soon after the re-start he made it 24-0 by converting try no.3 from scrum-half James Hayes thanks to a perfectly timed pass by no.8 Ollie Rupar off the base of a 5m scrum. Try number 4 quickly followed from wing Peter Scott, who’d looked like scoring almost every time he got the ball; slick passing by Hayes and Hallett gave him the ½ m he needed to round his opposite number, outpace the cross-covering defence and race in from half way to score beneath the posts. Hallett again converted.

With 15 minutes remaining Dover staged their fightback and with both Wimbledon props injured (and the ref surprisingly not allowing uncontested scrums) the home team looked a bit edgy.

But Wimbledon deservedly had the last word when Hayes rounded off a sterling performance at scrum half by gathering the ball from a lineout and sprinting through unopposed to score Dons’ final try and take the score to a convincing 36-12.

Wimbledon visitors next week are O.Colfeians. Although they have yet to record a win this season, Dons will be taking nothing for granted.

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