Defeat at Guildford for Colchester sees them relegated from Nationl League 3
- Credit: Archant
Guildford 33 Colchester 20 National 3 London & SE
Colchester travelled to Guildford to play a side three places above them in the league.
Their subsequent defeat confirms Colchester’s relegation, a sad situation as they have had so many close losses this season.
Guildford kicked off into the hands of lock Elliott Castle and this physical encounter began.
Within minutes prop Jerone Awesu was yellow carded for a high tackle on Guildford’s scrum half. Then the host’s No 8 Joe Garner powered over for an unconverted try.
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Later wing James Crozier missed a penalty but then prop Joe McMillan got hold of the ball and, along with his fellow forwards, advanced forward only to give away a penalty that home full-back Freddie Hooper converted.
Shortly after this, Guildford moved the ball swiftly to right win Nick Clarke who scored an unconverted try.
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He scored again later during a bizarre passage of play.
Colchester were pressing forward due mainly to the energetic work of back rowers Ben Murphy and Dan Whiteman. Scrum-half Brett Cutbush fed fly-half David Higgins whose long pass was intercepted by a Guildford player who ran the length of the pitch only to be caught by speedy centre Damien Brambley. However he managed to offload to Clarke for his second score.
Shortly before half-time Crozier converted a penalty putting Colchester on the scoreboard and bringing the score to 18-3. Not long into the second half the host’s inside centre dump tackled Crozier and left the game with a red card.
A quick penalty by Higgins was followed by a brilliant individual try by Brambley who jinked through the defence to touch down.
Higgins nearly added some more points with a long-range penalty kick that just went wide.
Then Hooper used his long legs to burst from the back of a scrum and score a try he then converted.
Back came Colchester and, following four unsatisfactory scrums, were awarded a penalty try making it 25-20.
Then Garner got another try and Hooper scored a penalty to wrap up proceedings with a victory for the Surrey side, leaving Colchester to start planning for next season.