11:00am Monday 18th March 2013
Wimbledon exited the Surrey Cup in some disarray, but certainly in no disgrace going down 26-8 at Guildford.
It was asking a lot of a team comprising just six players from the recent first XV squad to beat a well-drilled host who are in the promotion zone in London Two South West.
There was no lack of effort from any of the Dons’ players, nor a shortage of skills, but the absence of teamwork was obvious, particularly in the backs, where big gaps in defence were responsible for all four of Guildford’s tries.
What made them all the more galling for Wimbledon was that two of the tries (one in each half) came after long periods of sustained pressure from their forwards, when they looked the more likely to score.
Despite a substantial weight advantage to the home side resulting in Dons having a very tough time in the set scrum, they were the better side in the loose, with props Ben Davies and Joey Nanai and lock Tiernan Dixon in particular, driving time and again through their opposition.
Fly-half Miles Stringer opened the scoring for Wimbledon, with a penalty five minutes in.
Then, despite the slippery conditions causing handling errors galore, G’s wings, McEwan and Barclay ran in a try apiece, fullback Adam converting one, as he did McEwan’s second try just after the break.
The next 15 minutes were Wimbledon’s best period of the game, with the pack pinning G’s in their own 22.
Untiring work from forwards Olly Fulljames, Karl Roche and Charlie Horn, spurred on by scrum half Charlie Morgan eventually paid off when the lively Craig Bond went over for a well-deserved Wimbledon try, to take the score to a respectable 19-8.
Five minutes from time though, in this well-refereed game, very sloppy play by Dons let G’s in for a fourth try and a final scoreline that did not quite reflect the play.
It’s back to action in London Division One South this weekend at Hove, just one place below Wimbledon, when they hope to complete the win double over the Sussex team.
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