Worthing traveled the 5 miles along the A27 to local school Angmering. The two sides would be well matched and knew each others players, strengths and possible weaknesses well.
So to the off, Worthing working with what little breeze there was on offer and with the sun at their backs attacked the school end. After giving away the first penalty the Blues regained possession and played multiple phases before the first set piece over 2mins later. A sign of things to come? Not completely. Worthing had much of the early possession but could not break down the spirited and effective home defence.
On 15mins the Blues won a scrappy line out in the opposition 22 and good hands lead to Masham scoring on his return to his old stomping ground. Gibson with the extras 7-0 Blues.
Worthing lost concentration for a period after that and the home side put plenty of pressure on the Blues line but were stopped on every occasion. More penalties were given away but the line stood firm. A final penalty 5m out directly in front of the posts was too good an opportunity to pass up. 7-3 Blues.
The rest of the half was based around Worthing trying to assert their forward dominance and the Angmering back row and midfield trying to influence the game. This they did and arguably gained the upper hand at the breakdown and indisputably in the penalty count.
Half time 7-3 Blues.
Worthing turned around and started to try and apply the same territorial pressure that they had created in the first period. The Blues began by getting more joy at the breakdown, possibly as a result of the extensive effort the Angmering back row expended at scrum and line out time.
Good field position and a very good line out set lead to the Blues going over from 20m out. Increasing organisation and focus at the set piece was starting to show with Hrydynskyy, Doughty, Gibson dominating in the front row. Mills was having his standard game of getting to ever ruck and winning line out ball, Hassan was ably supporting the ball carrier and making runs himself. Dunk was good on the ball and got his share of ball at the set piece, Lake was putting in an Herculean effort and making an impact on the game. Masham too was playing a large part in the defensive effort and getting go forward on attack.
Hunt was moving the ball better than in recent times and his partnership with Swift was developing nicely. The makeshift partnership of Fogerty (again brilliant and having his best defensive display yet in a Blues jersey) and Harkin were outstanding on the with and especially without the ball. They were paired to contain and stretch the opposition in different situations, mission accomplished there. Peskett made his competitive Blues debut and didn’t look out of place at all on the wing. Tessier got through some excellent supporting work without getting his hands on the ball. Evans was outstanding at 15 he cleared up so much ball and countered very well, beating approximately 8 defenders during the match- great stats! Kruger and Packham made more strides forward as they came on and this too was achieved by Beecham on his introduction to the game where he helped close out the threat. Deschamps made a welcome return to action with 30mins and was happy at the end of his performance.
The Blues scored another try to make it 19-3 and then just before the end of the match Angmering pounced on a mistake by the Blues and finished brilliantly to make it 19-10 Blues.
A tough and exciting game played in an excellent spirt with Worthing the victors. Plenty for both teams to be pleased with but Worthing go into the next round.
Well done the Blues see you Friday.