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Ex-Players enjoy excellent 1st XV victory over league leaders

Cobham RFC’s 1st XV produce a fantastic performance to defeat league leaders Westcombe Park 27-24 in front of a large crowd of ex-players at Fairmile Lane on Saturday (23 November). This was the team’s sixth league win from their last seven matches, meaning the club climbed to fifth place in the London 1 South table.

There were tries from forwards Jake McQuade and Adrian Van Der Ploeg, while fly half Jonny Holmes contributed 17 points with the boot to secure a memorable win. It was a fitting performance on a great day for the club, which began with the Ex-Players being held in the Clubhouse prior to kick-off.

Director of Rugby, Steve Pope said: “The Old Boys Lunch is always a great occasion, with lots of great people sharing good food, drink and memories of what the club has given them over many years.

We were also fortunate enough to welcome the leagues leaders to our ever impressive facilities and host the match on the new AGP under the lights. The cold, wet and grey conditions did try to play their part but both sides produced, what I'm told by a number of spectators, one of the most enjoyable matches seen at the club in some years.”

“A big, organised and physical Westcombe Park (WCP) side arrived ready to play and were clearly set on extending their lead at the top of the table. I have to say that after a challenging week, again with injuries and availability, the boys responded very well to changes in personnel and the game plan. I could easily make mention of all 18 after that performance.”

“We had Johnny stepping up to take on the kicking duties, the likes of Sam and Theo moving positions to provide team with what was required on the day and Ryan leading the side so well as he has done all season. Chris Lippiatt was playing his last game for a while before he goes off to work abroad - we wish him the very best and look forward to seeing him back in club colours in the future.”

“The key for me is that we are now starting to get a better balance about what we expect from each other and the level of performance is improving each week. I do feel if we can continue to build on this and hopefully maintain the good atmosphere we have in the group, then we will become a very competitive club across the seniors sides.”

“I am very proud of the players, as we effectively played with 14 men for 35 minutes of the second half due to injuries. The level of effort, focus and commitment, alongside the game management and sticking to what we discussed before and during game. Leading 27-24, the last quarter of the match was possibly some of the best league rugby I've seen the boys play in my time here.”

“Credit to WCP; it was a cracking contest and I'm sure we will be warmly received on the return leg. As I say, a huge amount of credit to the boys for a fantastic job; both in defense and attack, they worked so hard for each other. We have a week off coming up, then we need to back this performance up when we host Medway the following Saturday (7 December).”

“It was great to see so many old boys watching today. Fish was looking strong and makes us all very proud to be associated with a club that has so many good people staying involved.”

Cobham 1st XV Squad 1 Chris Lippiatt 2 Andrew Murphy 3 Luke Bliss 4 Sam Matcham 5 Joe Goddard 6 Louis Porter 7 Theo Buffini 8 Jake McQuade 9 Ryan Saunders (Capt.) 10 Jonny Holmes 11 Dan Allchurch 12 Yannis Loizia 13 James MacDonald 14 Tiernan White 15 Rory Penfold

16 Olly Fox 17 Ali Porter 18 Adrian Van Der Ploeg

Man of the Match (Sponsored by George & Dragon, Thames Ditton): Jonny Holmes

Senior Result:

Cobham 3rd XV 12-27 Old Rutlishians

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