Bognor rugby youngsters beat Haywards to set up Sussex Cup semi

Storm Jorge couldn’t stop Bognor RFC Colts' Sussex Cup quarter-final going ahead against Haywards Heath - and Horsham’s 4G pitch was the scene for a tough encounter in near-perfect conditions. Bognor ran out 45-5 winners.
Bognor colts ready to take on Haywards HeathBognor colts ready to take on Haywards Heath
Bognor colts ready to take on Haywards Heath

Bognor started brightly with good shape to their attack - half-backs Alfie Spurle and Ben Woolnough testing every part of the Heath defence.

Bognor’s defence was relentless, led by George Orchard and Nathan Thompson, allowing Heath’s dangerous runners no space. Jamie Foote ran on his obligatory arc to break the gain line.

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Brad Smith fed Freddie Hayes and the centre sped clear to run in from halfway. Lewis Decarteret converted. Bognor attacked again with Harrison Southern prominent. Charlie Weller took the ball on and quick recycling saw hooker Ethan Teasdale crash over. Decarteret added the extras.

Bognor’s only defensive lapse saw Heath exploit a 3 v 2 perfectly to race over and close the gap.

For Bognor Owen Henton and Tyrone Makasi both made half breaks to create space. The omni-present Jack Trenham found Thompson, who powered over on the half-time whistle.

Bognor rang the changes at half-time and the fresh legs helped. Matthew Norrell and Ben Barker ruled the defensive line with punishing hits and, fresh from his England under-18 call up, Andrew Fadera ran strongly.

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Finn Glass made a powerful run through the middle and the ball was moved wide to Hayes, who took the outside shoulder and sprinted home. Decartert converted.

The Bognor line-out was exceptional and Charlie Jays won quality ball in the air and on the floor. Spurle and Woolnough stretched the opposition defence and moved the ball into the wide spaces, where Aquilla Matafwali was dangerous. He linked well with Decarteret who had too much pace and stepped through to score before converting his own try.

Harry Smith gave his opposite number no room to move and Decarteret and Hayes added further well-worked tries to seal a well-deserved home semi-final against either East Grinstead or Heathfield.

Bognor: Jack Trenham, Finlay Glass, Ethan Teasdale, Harrison Southern, Charlie Weller, Nathan Thompson, Mathew Norrell, George Orchard, Jamie Foote, Ben Barker, Charlie Jays, Andrew Fadera, Bradley Smith, Alfie Spurle, Owen Henton, Freddie Hayes, Tyrone Makasi, Aquilla Matafwali, Harry Smith, Ben Woolnough, Lewis Decarteret.