Holt bag all the points

Woodbridge 10, Holt 27

RUGBY: Holt 1st XV travelled to Woodbridge on Saturday hoping for another win after such an impressive performance at home the week before.

On dry day with a strong cross wind Holt started brightly. Continued pressure bought its reward after only five minutes in the shape of a penalty.

Tim Allen converted with a fine kick to start the scoreboard ticking in Holt's favour.

Four minutes later a clever kick from the base of an attacking ruck by scrum-half Ben Girling, set up a five metre scrum for Holt. The impressive Holt pack out-muscled their opponents to allow number eight Ashley Woods to touch down for the try.


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Tim Allen converted and nine minutes into the game Holt were deservedly ahead 10–0.

Woodbridge stepped up their game at this point and for the next 15 minutes both sides fought hard for dominance. Woodbridge gained the lion's share of possession despite the best efforts of Sammy Wright (who would later be named as man of the match) and moved the ball wide at every opportunity in attack.

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Holt worked hard to maintain their defensive line but 24 minutes into the half the Woodbridge outside centre broke through out wide to notch up the home sides first points with a well taken try.

There was no further score in the first half despite both sides creating numerous opportunities; this led to some frustration, which was adequately dealt with by the referee.

At the half-time whistle the score stood at Holt 10, Woodbridge 5.

The second half saw a change in tactics for Holt who slowed the game down and sought to maintain possession playing a tight game.

This game plan allowed Holt to dominate and 20 minutes into the second half a rolling maul set close to the Woodbridge line saw Graham Ilsley (making his debut this season with the 1st XV) emerge with the try, and although the conversion was missed Holt now looked as if they were in complete control.

Unfortunately for Holt, Iain Young (playing his second match for the club at 10) was very harshly yellow carded six minutes later for not rolling away after a tackle and in the confusion a tapped penalty was quickly taken and moved wide for Woodbridge to claim their second try of the game.

For the next ten minutes Holt kept the ball in the forwards and when Iain Young returned to the field they were in a threatening position on the Woodbridge five metre line.

Holt opted for a scrum and after three penalties the referee yellow carded the Woodbridge tight head for continued offences. The game was now played out with uncontested scrums, as Woodbridge did not have a front row replacement at this stage in the game. Holt feeling slightly aggrieved not to be awarded a penalty try in the circumstances and with no opportunity now to continue to use the scrum as an attacking option opted for a line-out.

The line-out was won and from the resulting maul Jake Van Poortvliet (who had come on as a replacement for hooker Liam Cooper) crossed the line for Holts third try. Allen again converted with style and with four minutes of normal time left the game was clearly won Holt now with a commanding 22-10 lead.

But there was more to come and in the last minute of the match a spectacular tackle from Tim Allen saw the ball dislodged from a Woodbridge player which was subsequently scooped up by Graham Ilsley who ran 60m, out-pacing the Woodbridge back three, to score his second and Holt's fourth try to claim the bonus point and seal the win.

Allen could not add the conversion this time, leaving the score at Holt 27, Woodbridge 10.

Holt are at home next week, playing host to Thurston and are keen to continue their winning ways and to complete the double over them, after winning the first encounter 29-10.

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