Seaford progress in the RFU Junior Vase

Chris Burns
Chris Burns

The Salts weather turned this RFU Junior Vase first round tie into a three-way battle.

After winning the toss, the visitors began brightly but it was clear that the conditions were playing havoc with both teams ambitions.

Gravesend’s first opportunity came from a lineout in the corner, the result of a penalty. A good take from their No 8, was brought down for a convincing drive over the Seaford line. 

Five points down and Seaford received a further blow when both Richard Foster and Steve Dann had to be replaced from the front row. 

Making use of the wind and the home side’s handling errors, the visitors pinned Seaford in their own half for most of the first 40 minutes. The pressure was soaked up by the Scarlets’ and, before the interval, quick-thinking by fly-half Paul Hardwick saw the ball go out wide for prop Steve Parker to cross over and level up the game.

The weather got worse, as an injury to a Gravesend player was accompanied by a hail shower, which briefly stopped play. When the game recommenced, second half substitute Josh Sheppard was played in by captain Paul Burns to score a second try in the corner.

Cox again struggled with the gusty conditions and couldn’t add any further points. Although Gravesend did at times work their way into Seaford’s half, the home side looked in control for the rest of the game.

Finally they finished the job when Chris Burns chipped over the visitors’ backs and picked up the ball, before running it in, between the posts. Cox was grateful for a simpler chance to add a conversion and duly delivered to finish the days scoring.

While Seaford can be happy with their win, they will feel frustrated that they were not afforded the opportunity to test their back line’s abilities.

Instead they will hope that things will come together for their trip to top of the league Chichester III this weekend.

SEAFORD TEAM: Parker, Dann (Lewis), Foster (Wilson), Diplock, A Flynn, Upton, B Joy, Newby, Baker, Hardwick, Voice (J Sheppard), B Cox, C Burns, D Flynn, P Burns.