1st XV
Sat 10 Feb 2024
Finsbury Park RFC
1st XV
Kilburn Cosmos
Mud and Guts

Mud and Guts

Alex Thomas14 Feb - 13:44
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written by Gary van Heuven

The Fins boys never second guessed the muddy conditions commented on by the Kilburn crowd. Wet morning saw the boys helping Big J keep the pitch up to scratch by sweeping puddles.

The new warm up strategy proved unsuccessful as a pumped Kilburn side came out the gates like a rat up a drain pipe and a poor take from kick off saw the Fins have to do some early defending inside their own half. A quick spread wide and a simple back move with a large forward pass saw the Kilburn right wing go in the corner. Tough kick from the sideline almost goes over.

0-5 Kilburn 

Fins get the message that the game was on and it was time to run this pack around as we don't get treated to being the bigger forward back very often. This showed in a dominant scrum inside the Kilburn 10m line and a show of class from Finsbury's very own Romain Ntamack opened a hole down the blindside for James Stables to sail through for a meat pie. Easy conversion from Will Gillham. 

7-5 Finsbury

A big momentum shift takes place as the boys find a footing in the mud. The forwards realise they have some superiority in the lineouts and in the scrum. A clutch penalty kick 5m out from the Kilburn line sees every forwards coach fantasy lineout maul unfold, and Fred Bromley gets a meat cake. Tight angle on the kick drops Wills conversion attempt short. 

12-5 Finsbury

An aggressive forward pack at the breakdown on the Kilburn side were not making the muddy fight easy, the Fins shoulders were tougher than woodpecker lips and kept showing they were there to play. The Fins kept the Kilburn side in their own half and the relentless pressure saw a desperate clearance kick not find touch out of their 22m. Instead it finds a very quick speedster, Freddie Barton, who makes light work around the winger and is quickly becoming Fredscoresagain…

17-5 Finsbury HT

Half time chat was a true masterclass of motivation from skipper Urban Coningham “let's put them to the sword and not get ahead of ourselves.” Simple plan, the boys were there to execute. Thankfully Will's boot was doing a lot better than any fancy kick attempt that Harry Wilkinson-Roberts fumbled. Field position from Will's boot saw another opportunity for the forward pack to do a demoralising driving maul 15m up the field to go over again. Tough kick again for Will. 

22-5 Finsbury

As the Fins are again inside the Kilburn half a good clearance kick from the first-five has the Fins running back to cover a good chase deep inside their own 22. A bit of pace from Gary van Heuven gets around one defender, and links up with Toby Birkett, who charges off and swindles 6 defenders to the 10m line. A quick shovel of the ball wide sees Freddie open up a hole, and he gives a quick tutorial to Mitch Scott on how to score tries, who then dots it down for his own meat pie. Will's boot likes them under the post and adds the extras. 

29-5 Finsbury

The Kilburn side late in the game keep the Fins under pressure and have a great opportunity to attack inside the home team's 22. A clever back line move by Kilburn looks as though their winger will go in, but a great tackle and turn over allows the Fins to scramble back into attacking rugby. Fatigue from the conditions is apparent by the boys on the field head to toe in mud. Silly mistakes giving away penalties and throwing the ball away keeps a Kilburn attack throwing everything at it. Alas a strong runner gets a cheeky inside ball and gets one under the sticks, the kick is good. 

29-12 Finsbury

A short run through the middle of the field wraps up the game with a penalty and the ball goes into touch. A triumphant victory from the forwards who kept relentless pressure on a hearty Kilburn forward pack. Great talent through both back lines saw a great game of running rugby in the backlines given the muddy conditions. Thanks to all the supporters for coming down, thank you to our sponsors, and thank you to William Webb Ellis for picking up the footy. 

MOTM - Gary van Heuven

DOTD - Harry Wilkinson Roberts

Match details

Match date

Sat 10 Feb 2024


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Team Sponsors

Main Sponsor  - The Faltering Fullback
Casualwear sponsor - The Naturalist
Post-game pub - The Salisbury Hotel