Tonbridge Juddians RFC

News and Events

Ben Kay, N1 Opening Draw and Return to rugby

5th September 2021

And breathe...........we knew everyone would be keen to get back to rugby after such a long time and boy did the weekend deliver

Highlight of course was TJs opening National 1 fixture on Saturday which drew a large crowd back to The Slade to see how the squad would match up against old foes Bishop's Stortford who have been at this level for a while now.

The game certainly delivered as both squads felt their way onto a new season and new campaign. Defences were as key as ever and it was clear that level 3 is an energy sapping step up to what TJs have been used to.

BS played with the strong breeze in the first half and took an early 7 point lead. TJs hit back with Mike O'Sullivan crashing over for the Club's first N1 try. 5-10 at half time as BS slotetd a penalty on 33 minutes.

The TJ scrum was gaining the upperhand but the lineout was a tad wonky whilst the backlines cancelled one another out for long periods.

Truman Sullivan levelled things up with a try on the right in the 39th minute before debutant Harvey Young from full back added a penalty at minute 57. The lead didn't last long though as BS slotted their own 3 points.

A Toby Freeman try took TJs to 18-13 but there was plenty of time left as the game was delayed whilst Matt Foulds was cared for before leaving the field. Medical reports confirm he's ok. 

TJs would have hoped that they could have kept BS out to secure the win but BS managed one final effort and forced their way over for a second try but could not convert. And as TJs attacked late on the ball was kicked out and the two sides shared the spoils.

A good game for both sides to open their account and TJs certainly showed that they could mix at this level. Rams away next weekend before Sale FC travel south will be testing benchmarks for sure.

The Extra 1s also took on BS in an earlier KO and ran out comfortable 43-14 winners. Led by Dave Irvine the squad showed that we have strength in depth and hopefully that will stand us in good stead.

Of course the weekend kicked off earlier on Friday evening with a Sportsmen's Dinner with Ben Kay. The England RWC 2003 winner and tv pundit was exception al on an evening sponsored by FindMy Kit. A Huge thank you to both Ben and FindMyKit is warranted.

And on Sunday the MInis/Juniors were also back at The Slade to enjoy the sunshine and more as they too kicked off their seasons with start up training and more.

It's good to be back!

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