Fulham and Hammersmith Rugby
The first major test for the H&F 2XV came in the form of Hampstead 2XV travelling down to hurlingham park on a wet Saturday afternoon. Both had started the season in fine form winning all their games with bonus point victories…… this was going to be a bruiser!
The Hammers 2XV were already weakened with the news of a new coach and a new captain, resembling an act of dumb and dumber in James “not sure if you know I’m injured” Cramp and Taylor “limited vocabulary” Williams. The preparation started poorly with the new coach realising none of the squad had listened to his request of picking the kit up from Mcgettigans, and with the help of Slade “pretentious” Buchner the uber bills began to rack up on the one-legged coach.
The warm up was slick and effective with Angus “Jonny May” Lean and Tim “Vunipola” Macnaughton getting the troops going. Ed “Grandad” Clark was getting the backs fired up, rumour has it he is now the 3rd best 9 at the club…. Not the best way to treat your elders.
The game kicked off and Hammers had started very well, utilising the structures that have been put in place this season, the scrum setting a good platform for our talented backs to run from. Sustained pressure led to a successful penalty kick from Jack “not quite Wilkinson” Davies.
Shortly after this there was a horrific injury to the Hampstead centre who had already made some very good inroads to our half. Our thoughts and best wishes are with the Hampstead player in his recovery from this injury!
This understandably spurred Hampstead on, and they were fighting well for their friend, displaying some very abrasive and constructive rugby. They took a 10-3 lead at half time.
Words of wisdom were flying around at half time, with a lot of the experienced players chipping in with the systems we should be doing, the main one being the forwards needing to dominate the contact area and rucks. Nick “also loves a golf cart” Powell getting riled and putting the frighteners up the boys, nobody wanted to see him on the Fulham palace road in a golf buggy.
The second half started, and Hammers began to control the game, utilising the structures well again and beginning to spread the ball through the hands which was impressive in difficult conditions. 10 minutes into the second half and 4 changes were made, with Rhys “Statham” Williams, Dom “Peel” Woodfine, Ed “I’m a 10 not a 15” James and Slade “pretentious” Buchner entering the fray and making big impacts.
The first big of magic of the day from Casey “strictly come dancing” Dennis, made some space out of nothing and fed Lean for the Hammers first try of the day. Not long after this Dennis made another fantastic break, which had the fans on the side-line holding up the 10 signs for his showstopping footwork, another try, and the hammers were 15-10 to the good.
Hampstead rallied, they decided to tighten up and really take the fight to us, resulting in a Chad “3 birds fighting over me” Buchner receiving the sin bin, luckily none of these girls were waiting for him…. Hampstead then scored from the resulting line out, with their kicker nailing a difficult conversion.
17-15 with 3 minutes to play! The Hammers kicked the ball well at the kick off and won a very effective turnover within the Hampstead half. The kick was tough, but one which would win us the game. Did Davies, who had missed pretty much everything all day, have it in him to make the kick…… of course he did, backing himself and producing a superb match winning kick! The sideline was going crazy with the 10s raised once again, Dennis ears had pricked noticing this, but unfortunately this wasn’t for him.
The match finished with a hard thought win for the Hammers 2XV, a first competitive win for Williams as captain and Cramp as coach! The boys were coming down the tunnel with a lot of energy and joy, even Grandad Clark managed a DAB! A fantastic way to end the game.
Again, we wish the Hampstead player who suffered the injury all the best in his recovery and look forward to facing them again later in the season.
MOM – Casey Dennis
DOTD – Chad Buchner
Debuts – Alex Peers, Chris Appleyard, Ed James
Having lost their first two Middlesex 1 league games Hammers 3rd XV hosted local South West London rivals the Millfield Old Boys Badgers, at Fortress Hurlingham, on a warm 29th September afternoon.
Benefiting from a compliment of newly selected Hammers, blended with many of the 3XV old guard, on paper Hammers posted a strong XV.
Following a solid warm up Hammers took control of the game early, having the vast majority of the initial territory and possession. Hammers intent to play was obvious form the outset with ball being spun wide and wingers Huw Bowen and George Lawson both getting involved in the early action.
Early in the first half stalwart Huw Bowen showed his top-class finishing skills from the half way line, rounding several Badgers on his way to dot down under the sticks. The points were added by newbie Scrum half Harry Roe who displayed confidence from the boot all afternoon in what became a high scoring local derby.
After a further attritional battle, with big forward carries being made by Tim Chandler, Chris Appleyard and James ‘Seamus’ Heaney the Hammers lead was added to by no8 Damo ‘Thomas Waldrom’ who carried hard to dot down over the line.
However, the Badgers didn’t come to Hurlingham just for the glorious Fulham sunshine and showed their dogged determination and grit to fight back mid first half, taking back possession, building strong phases and working hard to cross the line twice in close succession.
Hammers retaliated with great skill being shown by the youthful Oli Scholes who dotted down to help re-build the hammers lead however, Bagders again played their one-up game plan and built phases to score in the second period of the first half.
After a further period of phase play and strong forward carries from Oli Mitchel, Bertie Weston Davies, and veteran Simon Khalil Hammers speedo wearing skipper Will Parker, showed grit to get over the line and further build the lead for Hammers before half time.
Badgers started the second half strongly dominating possession and territory, leading to two early tries which pushed them into the lead with Hammers heads starting to drop. Close games such as these often test one’s character, with Huw Bowen stepping up to show character in abundance and score two further top-class long-range tries, putting hammers back in front.
Mid second half Hammers coach Dan de Wolf chose to make changes and bring on veteran scrum half Dave Buchanan, speedster Jack Hooper, the athletic Benji Reid and the new streamlined Abe Knight, demanding an immediate impact from the bench. Dan’s decision was rewarded by Jack Hooper connecting well with Oli Scholes, who both showing their ‘Dunseath coached’ in contact offloading skills to get the ball into the hands of Dave Buchanan who rounded his defender and turned back his years to finish a 50-metre run in under close chase.
Huw Bowen again added to the points tally showing his top-class finishing skills to score his 4th try and earn himself a man of the match performance. Hammers were now well ahead however, the ever-dogged Badgers played with heart and in good spirit, clawing one try back ahead of the final whistle.
Overall this was a close fought contest with Hammers just edging in front to take the victory with the final score being 46-38!
On a sunny day of what has been an ever ending summer, and a slightly longer commute than
planned, the 4s arrived at Twickenham, the home town of English rugby. Despite being squeezed
into the smallest changing room most had ever seen, spirit was high! Some late reinforcement from
the 2s had been provided. The opposition had conceded defeat when they heard Crampy and his
boys had trashed Hackney and Kilburn back to back.
The warm up, led by Captain Will, looked slick and the lads were up for battle after some BOPP and
pod drills. 15min before kick-off, a late arrival by Dominic Woodfine concluded the team runs and
the 4s were ready. Twickenham decided to add a late twist to the game and requested for the scrum
to be uncontested. Our bemused captain had just found that Hammersmith were starting with a 14
Twickenham kicked off the game but the Hammers applied pressure straight away. It was a strong
start with some powerful running from the forwards. In no time, H&F opened the score after a well-worked
try by Tim McNaughton. Slade duly converted, 0- 21 for H&F.
Twickenham restarted and applied pressure at the breakdown almost immediately. After earning a
penalty for not releasing, their full back kicked it into the corner. Despite holding up in defence,
Hammersmith kept conceiving penalties at the ruck. Debutant Alex Peers received a yellow card for
H&F consecutive infringements. Twickenham was quick to score their first try through the middle
from a strong run by their back row. H&F was pinned into their 22s for most of the first half from
excellent kicks by the opposition back 3. Twickenham finished strong with two further tries before
half time. 17-21
After a pep talk by Will Finn on structure and the breakdown issues, H&F added some fresh legs.
Dominic Woodfine went to scrum half, pushing Simon O’Sullivan onto the wing and Declan Food
jumped into the second row. It wasn’t long before H&F got back into their rhythm again. Within
5min Chad Buchner powered through Twickenham’s defence with the help of few hammers 17-28.
Crampy took the restart, but after running 10m went to the floor in pain with what looked a very
serious injury. The 2s captain will be dully missed by H&F for the next few months. He was replaced
by Bob Davies. H&F lost their concentration and quickly conceded another well worked try by
Twickenham, through some quick phase play. 23-28.
The restart was much better by H&F by using Dominic wonder boot. Hammers forwards got back
possession and were able to get some strong carries. They ended up with a scrum close to their 22
line. With a well-executed Saints move, Chris Ralph left Twickenham centre frozen by his dazzling
pace. 23-33. Hammers tried to get Nick Powell and Seb Money on the pitch but Twickenham coach
was being extremely difficult and un-sportsmanlike as he did not allow more than 3 subs.
Twickenham regathered and continue to put pressure on H&F back 3 with another well placed kick.
Max Dubois at 15 let the ball roll and touched down for what he thought was a 22 drop out, not
realising he had touched down in the 22, the ball was still in play… Despite re-enforcement from
Charlie McCarthy, H&F was quickly turned over and Twickenham scored 25-33. Pressure kept coming
from Twickenham and soon they passed the white line twice after some sleek running from their
back line, 37.33.
H&F was able to get back into Twickenham’s half after some big carries by the forwards. Hammers
applied from strong pressure but handed up losing the ball in a line out. Twickenham kicked the ball
into touch and the whistle blew for full time. Final score 37-33.
The hammers will feel they let that one slip away but credit is due to Twickenham who applied
constant pressure with some intelligent kicking. H&F was not able to get their hands on the ball and
did not play enough in the opposition 22. Exit will need to be worked on at training.
MoM: Chad Buchner despite requesting repeatedly to be substituted during the second half.
Tin Man: Max Dubois for losing his mental compass.
Slade Buchner x1
- Rob Johnston
- Phil Lord
- Joe Darwood
- Zander Stephen
- Josh McLean ©
- Ultan Bruton
- Ash Mitchell
- Tim Murray
- Dave Buchanan
- Alex Warner
- Alex Gee
- Rob Fox
- Dave Panter
- Huw Bowen
- Jack Goldberg
- James Darrall
- Tim Williams
- Jordan Abbott
- Ed Clark
- Sam Sheppard
Bad news is that Hurlingham will still not be ready but the good news is that we have booked LILLIE ROAD RECREATION GROUND (which is at the junction of Lillie Road and Fulham Palace Road) for all age groups. We won’t have the same facilities there as we enjoy at Hurlingham so please bring water with you. The session will start at 10.00am and last until 12.00 noon. New members are very welcome to come along, but will need to complete the registration form before joining in the fun. We will be at Lillie Road Recreation Ground until we are given permission to return to Hurlingham.
Training will continue at Lillie Road Rec for at least another week, but due to the light failing training has been brought forward to 7.00pm. Whilst this will inconvenience many of you, please get there as early as you can. The Club is working hard on the Council to persuade them to allow us back to Hurlingham as soon as possible.
As the pitch renovation work has still not been completed the Council has informed us that we cannot use Hurlingham on Saturday 1st September 2018. We have therefore switched all the men’s & ladies games to Barn Elms Sports Ground (Queen Elizabeth Walk, Barnes, London SW13 0DG). Kick off times are on the fixtures page.
We had planned to start our new season on 2nd September 2018, but the Council has just informed us that the pitches at Hurlingham Park are not ready and that we cannot use them. Our first session has therefore been postponed to Sunday 9th September 2018.
Unfortunately Hurlingham Park is still closed. Please note that training will continue to be at Lillie Road Recreational Ground until further notice.
We will advise on here and across the social channels when we are able to access Hurlingham Park.
Fully paid up members of the Club over the age of 18 are eligible to apply for tickets for England’s games against South Africa, Australia and New Zealand at Twickenham this Autumn (the game against Japan will be on public sale through the England Rugby website).
To apply for tickets
- Download the application form (click here to download form);
- Complete the form and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org; and
- Make payment as directed on the form.
But please note:
- You may only initially apply for a maximum of two tickets per game;
- Forms will not be accepted without payment; and
- Late, incomplete or unsigned applications will not be accepted.
The deadline for applications is SUNDAY 30th SEPTEMBER 2018.
After a long and rigorous search, Hammersmith & Fulham RFC is pleased to announce the appointment of Liam Dunseath as Head Coach for the 2018/19 season.
Currently serving as Head Coach of London Southbank University following stints in Fiji, Iran, and Thailand, Liam also served as a specialist video analysis consultant to England’s Head Coach Eddie Jones in their victorious 2016 Grand Slam 2016 Grand Slam Title, RBS 6 Nations & the Triple Crown campaign.
In executing his task, Liam will be supported by our excellent assistant coaching team of James Coughbrough, Dan DeWolfe, and long-time tormentor and fitness coach, Ian Burbidge.
With pre-season having now started, Liam is already working with the team to deliver on the club’s ambitions and targets. In Liam’s own words:
“I’m extremely excited to be appointed as Head Coach at H&F RFC.
The club has a clear objective and vision to be promoted to London 1 and my job is to facilitate the players potential to achieve this. Even as a Level 7 club, I’ve been thoroughly impressed with the interview process and what the club stands for with several leaders already being evident. There’s no denying as the players and coaches, we all have a massive task at hand. This is an achievable journey with hard work, dedication and the willingness to develop new skills as the club and players grow.”