Burnham 1st XV avenge earlier season defeat
By Niall Hornett
Good start to the New Year
Burnham entertained Basildon in the first league fixture for 2019 and were certainly hoping to avenge a very controversial 1 point defeat at Basildon earlier in the season.
In what would prove to be a quite physical affair, Burnham quickly learnt that the referee was not going to take any prisoners, and this would prove to be key in the end.
Burnham started brightly, and with an attacking set of backs, wanted to use the pace and width of the pitch to stretch the Basildon defence. Both teams were looking to p[lay open rugby, and Basildon were clearly happy to play an open game off-loading to their big forwards to create the gaps to exploit.
Both teams managed to trade a couple of tries, and at half-time Basildon were edging the game 14-10.
The second half started and Basildon were reduced to 14 men on two occasions through a lack of discipline. Burnham however couldn't find the break through largely as a result of over complicating moves, dropped balls and indecisive kicking.
On the 60th minute, Basildon announced they needed to go to uncontested scrums. Why, no-one seems to understand, the scrum hadn't changed, but Burnham even though with a smaller pack were starting to exert a lot of pressure. Clearly this was tactical (and also something they had done in the previous fixture). With an uncontested scrum they released their No 8 who went over for a try. They now had a nine point advantage and time was running out for Burnham.
Burnham seemed to pull themselves together, and set-up a great move for a crashing run over the try line and under the posts.Seven points clawed back. Basildon 19, Burnham 17, but time was running out.
In the final minute, Burnham were awarded a penalty. It was too far out for the kick, so kicked into Basildon's corner. It was now, or never for the team. The line-out was perfectly executed, and with ten meters to the try line, Burnham got the maul going. The meters closed down and with two meters to go Basildon deliberately collapsed the maul. The referee immediately ran to the posts awarding Burnham a penalty try. Literally the last act of the game.
Final score Burnham 24, Basildon 17.
TJ - 2
Luke C - 2
Next week the 1st team are away to Witham