Beckenham rack up half century against Deal
By Michael Timms
8 tries secures the full 5 points for the blue and gold!
This week Beckenham welcomed Deal and Betteshanger to Balmoral, with the visitors still looking for their first win of the new year and Beckenham looking to tighten their grasp on the title.
The return fixture was an electric game with both sides trading scores early on, with Beckenham eventual winners 50-26. The early exchanges were dominated by Beckenham. With lessons learned from the previous encounter, A line out on Deals 20 went to hand, and the resulting work by the forwards to get around the corner, gave James Cleverly the opportunity to set off on a too familiar rampaging run, sucking in Deals defence. With quick ball from the ruck, Louis Richards, taking a page out of Johnny Sextons book and throwing what would have been an intercept pass, had Henry Slade been playing for Deal, was relieved to see the ball knocked on into the path of JP Santamaria, who skipped over for the first score of the day, rewarding Beckenhams early dominance. Richards Adding the extras 7-0
The following few minutes saw both teams trading possession resulting in lineouts for both sides. However, after being pinned into their 22 with a lovely kick from Keita Orelaja (Kurtis Kurtis), Deal’s resulting lineout was sloppy. With the ball spilled, an impressive carry from academy debutant Lamar Sinclair, put Beckenham on the front foot. Louis Richards received quick ball from the breakdown, getting an arm free in the tackle, allowing him to pop off to the supporting James Curr, who dotted down just inside the sticks. Richards adds the extras. 14-0
If there was anything learned from our trip to the South coast before Christmas, it was that Deal play on a smaller than usual pitch. With the paddock at Balmoral being significantly wider, Beckenham sought to utilise this space for the next try, with some solid forward carry’s and tight phases, sucking in the Deal defence, the ball was eventually shipped wide to Keita Orelaja, who glided through the trailing Deal defence to stroll in under the posts to give Richards the easy additional 2. 21-0 with 14 minutes played.
Deal however were not giving in this early and with some solid set piece play and silly penalties from Beckenham, Deal made their way into the Beckenham 22. With the resultant lineout stopped illegally by Beckenham. Deal opted for the corner once more. Beckenham disrupted the lineout well, only for a knock on to be given. This provided Deal with the scrum just short of the Beckenham line. Steven Brown, showing why he would eventually be crowned man of the match, made a massive hit off the scrum, but to no avail, as the ball was recycled well to the blind side where Matt Woods slipped the next tackle to score Deals first try. Matt Halpin added the extras. 21-7.
From the kick off there was some scrappy play from both teams which resulted in Deal failing to clear their lines. This invited the Beckenham pack to carry hard, picking and going, phase after phase. Eventually the ball was shipped out to Andrew Knowles, who barrelled his way over for a try from 5m out, which is quickly becoming a trademark. Louis Richards successful from the tee again! BP secured within 24 minutes. Score 28-7.
Shipping some heavy knocks from the previous plays Orelaja and Santamaria were substituted, for Jamie McDowall, returning from injury and Reegan Tarbie for his 2nd cap hoping to add to his try tally from his successful debut the week previous. The remaining time before the half saw some interesting play, along with questionable refereeing decisions regarding knock ons. Deal managed to make their way into the Beckenham Red zone once again, however, any attack was phased out by the resilient blue and gold defence.
Deal came firing out of the blocks after half time, winning a penalty and kicking to the corner with the help of the wind. Deal won the lineout, executing a slick peel move paired with soft tackling from Beckenham which saw Gavin Elsan bundle over the line for Deals second score of the day, Halpin adding the extras. 28-14
The next try came from a fantastic solo effort by Jamie McDowall. Opting for the chip over the top, the covering deal defender miss read the bounce, with the ball bouncing favourably into the hands of McDowall, who rounded him with ease and scored in the corner. Richards wide 33-14.
The next score came from a penalty, although not the way you would expect. Steven Brown with the turnover at the breakdown, gave Richards the chance to kick into the corner. The kick overshot however, resulting in the ball going dead. The 22 dropout from Deal was knocked on by Beckenham, however the pack atoned for the error by winning the scrum against the head, giving the back line an excellent attacking platform. Up step Reegan Tarbie, who drew in two defenders and managed a Fijian-esque offload out the back, releasing Mike Furness down the right wing to finish a love piece of play. Richards adding the 2 points. 40-14 after 60 minutes.
The next five minutes where cagey. A succession of penalties in defence had given Deal field position and having stopped an initial burst. A quick tap penalty was taken well by the centre who capitalised on a switched off defence to score under the posts. Extras added. 40-21
A ten minute quiet spell ensued with neither team managing to capitalise, until some slick hands by the Beckenham back line provided Reegan Tarbie with his 2nd try in as many games, what a start the youngster is having! Richards unable to add the extras. 45-21 with around 10 minutes left to play.
The 79th minute saw Henry Kenny score his first 1st XV try, out on the left wing, with the defence caught short, Kennny showed a good turn of pace to stroll over in the corner. In what can only be described as excitement at scoring his first senior try in only his second game, Kenny decided to top it off with a yellow card for good measure, after a melee broke out straight after the try was scored. Richards deciding that 50 was a nice round number, missed the conversion. The kick off saw Beckenham keep hold of the ball and close out the game as 50-21 winners.
Thank you to Deal for again playing a part in a great game of rugby. Always a tough fixture against the men in black. Wishing you all the best for the remaining part of the season.
This weeks man of the match went to Steven Brown, who had a fantastic game! He was closely tailed by George Hixson and debutant Lamar Sinclair both unlucky to lose out to Brown. It must also be noted that the three academy players Henry Kenny, Reegan Tarbie and Lamar Sinclair, who have stepped up to the 1stXV, have made massive impacts and are now key members of the squad. They epitomise what it means to be a Beckenham player, with over 70% of the current squad coming through the Beckenham youth system…. the future looks bright!
Next week we are away to Aylesford Bulls before a well-deserved week off. Thank you as always for your support