Raiders fall to defeat at high-flying Park

Dan Sargent scored Raiders' third try at Rosslyn Park
Dan Sargent scored Raiders' third try at Rosslyn Park

WORTHING Raiders Rugby Club slipped into the bottom three of National 1 on Saturday after losing 48-17 away to high-flying Rosslyn Park.

It was a seventh defeat in eight league games and Raiders coach Kieron Dawson admitted his side did not deserve anything from the game.

He said: “It wasn’t one of our better performances and the scoreline was a fair reflection of the difference between the two sides.

“There’s been other games where we’ve played well and deserved to win but Saturday wasn’t a good performance.

“We went up there looking for the win and scored three tries and had other chances but our final delivery kept letting us down, as I keep saying.”

Raiders travelled to Rosslyn Park looking to try to improve on the home display, which saw them just slip to defeat at home to Esher the previous weekend.

James Chisholm was needed by Harlequins and Sam Hewick, Scott Barlow and Kiba Richards were all rested, while Finlay Coxon-Smith dropped down to the A team to get game time in his preferred centre position.

Simon Gaynor came into the team, along with Jamie Redmayne and Rob Smith, while Ollie Richards replaced Kiba Richards in the backs and Ben Loosmore started on the wing.

On the bench, there were spots for Matt Peters and Matt Lasis for the first time and a return for Mickey Pointing and Charlie McGowan, after his suspension.

The game started at a high tempo and in the first ten minutes both teams were on the scoreboard. Park fly-half Scott Sneddon punished Raiders’ indiscipline with a penalty, before openside Sam Shires went over in the corner.

Raiders lost prop Kerry O’Sullivan early to a calf injury and he was replaced by Pointing. But Raiders hit back almost straight away with Rob Smith barging his way over.

The action was back and forth, but there was no further score until ten minutes before half-time. A lost Worthing line-out on their own line enabled Hugo Ellis to be driven over and Sneddon converted for a 17-5 lead.

Worthing quickly responded as lock Simon Gaynor scored his first try for the club and Govett’s conversion made the score 17-12. However, there was still time for Park’s Charlie Broughton to barge over some ineffective tackling and make the half-time score 22-12.

Knowing they needed to score first to be in with a chance in the game, Raiders looked to attack. But once Park found themselves into the Raiders 22, their dominant scrum was halted – the referee deemed illegally – and a penalty try was awarded and Sneddon successfully converted.

Broughton ran in untouched from 60 metres to increase the home side’s lead, before Dan Sargent went over for Raiders’ third try,

The afternoon finished with two further scores for Park through Sneddon, who finished with 18 points, and Ellis.

Only good defence from the home team and some last-ditch tackles prevented the Raiders from securing the four-try bonus point.

WORTHING: Greenwood, Loosmore, O.Richards, Dudley, Nielsen, Leeming, Govett, Perkins, Redmayne, Smith, Gaynor, Stutchbury, Sargent, Miles, O’Sullivan. Subs: Pointing (O’Sullivan 5), McGowan (Stutchbury 51), Lasis (Leeming 58), Cleveland (Pointing 65), Peters (Smith 83).