Reading RFC suffer home defeat to Winchester – Reading Today Online

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Reading RFC showed good spirit against a slick Winchester outfit whose better finishing ability ultimately gave them a comfortable victory on a freezing afternoon at Holme Park.

Reading were still in the game after the interval, but a 20 minute period of pressure at the start of the second half by Winchester yielded them two tries and saw off any fight back.

Winchester scored an early try when their wing took advantage of a Reading kick ahead and made a break close to the line where despite a despairing last-ditch tackle, he popped the ball up for a supporting player to score an unconverted try.

Reading did not let this setback deter them and had the better of the play for the next period and a series of phases was only kept out by a resolute Winchester defence.

Reading RFC Pictures: John Vermont

Eventually Winchester infringed in front of the posts and Sharp converted the resulting penalty to reduce Winchester’s lead.

Winchester then went on the attack and at this time achieved some scrum dominance which they put to good effect scoring a push over try from a scrum close to the Reading line.

It was now Reading’s turn to go on the offensive, and they set up a series of attacks in the opposition 22. Eventually Winchester ran out of defenders and the ball was moved to Dorliac who scored in the corner. The conversion failed.

Winchester then came back on the attack and after some minutes of pressure on the Reading line, when Reading were unable to clear their lines, a good back move was finished off by the full back cutting inside to score a try which was not converted.

This made the score 8-17 which it remained at half time. At this stage Reading, despite lacking their opponents’ greater ability to finish, were still in the game thanks to their spirited and combative performance.

Winchester however put the result out of doubt with a dominant performance for the first part of the second half during which Reading found it difficult to get out of their own half.

During this period Winchester scored two tries, one from their outside half who faced with a line of Reading defenders chipped through and followed up his kick to score under the posts, the second from a line out drive which Reading were unable to stop which made the score 8-29.

Winchester broke free and moved up the pitch and with the last move of the match scored a try with a peel from a line out near the Reading line. This made the final score 8-36 a margin which did not do justice to Reading’s general play.

Luke Harding, Reading head coach, was pleased with general improvement in play but disappointed that the team was still inconsistent in their levels of concentration and aggression although he sees signs of hope for the second half of the season which starts in Jersey against the league leaders next Saturday.

Try: Dorliac

Penalty: Sharp

Reading: Alex Dorliac (capt.); Tom Johnson, Archie Wright, Alex Murray-Smith, Charlie Attard; Tom Sharp, Hayden Wheeler; Josh Pallett, Joe Dottson, Steve King; Joe Clarkson, Harvey Rice; Will Proctor-Searle, Alex Rowe, Ben Willis

Replacements: Tom David, Stu Borthwick, Sam Eastwood.

Report by Peter Chidgey

 

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