Horsham make Beckenham ‘look ordinary’ but conclude season with defeat

Rugby: London 2 South East: Horsham v Medway. Pic Steve Robards  SR1700478 SUS-170116-094454001
Rugby: London 2 South East: Horsham v Medway. Pic Steve Robards SR1700478 SUS-170116-094454001
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Horsham head coach Nick Stocker felt his side put in a solid display to make previous promotion chasers Beckenham ‘look ordinary’ on Saturday.

With Beckenham just missing out on promotion and Horsham firmly anchored in mid-table, nothing was riding on the result, however, both sides served up a treat of running rugby in glorious sunshine in south London.

It was the hosts that edged things as they ran in two converted tries in the second half, despite the scores being to within a point with 50 minutes played.

The result sees the Green and Whites conclude the league season with four straight defeats in London 3 South East and secure a seventh-placed finish with 47 points from their 22 games.

Horsham head coach Stocker commented: “Overall it was a good performance where we controlled the scrum and shaded the lineout which was an improvement on recent weeks.

“A 15-minute spell in the first half saw Beckenham establish a lead that we could never quite claw back but the efforts were very good.

“For a team that until two weeks ago were in the promotion play-off hunt, we made them look ordinary and but for fine margins and in some cases the luck of the bounce, we would have come away with a well- deserved win.

“There were notable performances from the likes of Rich Tredgett, Will Bell and Tom Johnson but the man of the match from our side was shared between Jonny Whiting and Jonny Goward who both put themselves about in a fiercely-physical encounter.”

Beckenham kicked an early penalty but Horsham responded when the ball was spun wide to Declan Nwachukwu who chipped his man and Joe Wilde used his pace to be first to ground the ball.

Tom Johnson added the extras and Horsham lead 7-3 after seven minutes.

Beckenham then took control in the middle period of the first half adding three tries after too many missed tackles by the Green and Whites to take a commanding 22-7 lead and the writing appeared to be on the wall for Horsham.

The visitors, however, started to show a greater resolve in the closing minutes of the half and following a powerful break by Jonny Whiting from the base of the scrum, Will Bell was on hand to score the try and going into the break it was only resilient defence from Beckenham that prevented Horsham adding to their tally.

The Green and Whites started the second half strongly and after good pressure at the scrum, the ball was recycled and Rob Grantham-Hill cut back on a good line to score.

Johnson added his third conversion, this time from close to the touch-line and Horsham had narrowed the deficit to 22-21 after 50 minutes.

This was as good as it got for the hosts because Beckenham added two further converted tries to seal the win.