Petersfield Rugby Club’s under-15s won 48-14 at Winchester on a quagmire of a pitch to claim the Hampshire League Division One title with a game to spare.
Despite the horrendous weather the visitors played with flare and scored early on with a strong break from centre Elliot Smith to score the first of his two solo tries. Despite the tricky conditions, Field ran in three tries to lead 17-0 at half time.
With the wind – and torrential rain – on their backs Winchester started with purpose in the second half and scored first to bring the score to 17-7. The home side continued to apply pressure, and with the ball hard to control they put Field under more pressure.
However, with their backs to the wall the visitors produced some sublime rugby to run in several stunning second-half tries.
The pick of the tries came from full back Teddy Henry collecting a loose ball in his own deadball area, where he evaded or shook off several defenders under his posts before setting off on a mazy run through the 22. Having beaten two more defenders Henry drew the last man to release winger Reece Beattie to run the rest of the pitch to score. Field ran in five second-half tries to overwhelm Winchester with a 48-14 victory to seal the league title.
Petersfield’s under-15s then travelled down the M27 for a match against Trojans to conclude the regular league season.
A well-drilled Trojans team flew out of the blocks and put a rather sloppy Field under immense pressure. Excellent defence from Petersfield, often on their own line, saw them stand firm. Slowly Petersfield got a foothold in the game and got down to the Trojans 22. A poor kick out allowed Petersfield the space they needed and Elliot Smith ran in a strong try.
Relentless Trojans pressure was withstood by Petersfield throughout the first half, and when the visitors made a foray into the Trojans 22 they came back with points. An unusually stuttering Petersfield side were flattered by their 15-0 lead at half time.
Playing with the wind behind them in the second half, and with complete domination of the scrum, a gritty Trojans jumped off the horse and scrapped hard. They were rewarded with a try in the corner, and then attacked again. A Field error gifted Trojans a second try, and the score was 15-10 with ten minutes left.
Trojans continued to dominate and with three minutes to go were rewarded with their third try. The conversion was missed, and the game finished 15-15.
Despite their flattest performance of the season, a courageous defensive display had earned Petersfield a share of the spoils.
Field finished the regular season with four wins and one draw.