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London Two North East: Romford & Gidea Park director of rugby Steve Barfoot challenges team to improve

PUBLISHED: 13:00 11 November 2016

George Robertson of Romford & Gidea Park in action against Old Cooperians (pic George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

George Robertson of Romford & Gidea Park in action against Old Cooperians (pic George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

Poor second half display at Old Cooperians resulted in Crow Lane club losing thrilling derby encounter 26-24

Action from the derby between Old Cooperians and Romford & Gidea Park (pic: George Phillipou/TGS Photo)Action from the derby between Old Cooperians and Romford & Gidea Park (pic: George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

Steve Barfoot believes Romford & Gidea Park are capable of beating anybody in London Two North East and called on them to show it this weekend.

Park host divisional rivals South Woodham Ferrers in the first round of the Essex Intermediate Cup.

The Crow Lane club won the competition last season, but face a stern examination against a team who are third in the table.

“We are more than capable of beating any side in this league, but we just need to know how to finish games off,” said Barfoot.

“On Tuesday we had a meeting at training which was very productive and constructive.

“We’ve got South Woodham this weekend and we will give it a good shot. They are doing well in the league, but it’s the cup so we hope to make it through.”

Romford’s second team are also in action at Crow Lane tomorrow (Saturday) and Barfoot is keeping an eye on how they get on.

Park’s director of rugby is hoping to see both progress, adding: “It is nice to have this game. The twos are in cup action as well and both are at home.

“It will be interesting to have a look at how everybody is doing for the seconds and see if anybody is ready to make the step up. I’m hoping it can be a good weekend for the club.”

Many of the London Two North East teams take a break this Saturday, but Barfoot is pleased Park are playing again.

That is because they were left frustrated at local rivals Old Cooperians last weekend, due to a tight 26-24 defeat.

“We were 24-13 up and in our minds I think the game was won and we started playing stupid rugby,” said Barfoot.

“Credit to them because they kept going and got the win, but it was very naive on our part and frustrating.”

Tries from Ian Semain, Jamie Harbour and Barney Savill, plus conversions from Tom Cameron, had Romford in control.

But Old Cooperians slowly reduced the deficit, before a counter-attack from their own line resulted in a try which levelled the scores at 24-24 in the dying exchanges.

A successful conversion put the hosts ahead and Park didn’t have enough time to hit back.

“It was very frustrating. First half we played extremely well as the scoreline suggests, but we sat back in the second half,” added Barfoot.

“We let Old Cooperians have the ball and it was hard to take when they scored the try late on, but fair play, they took their chances. Their back-line was very good and the opportunities we gave away, they managed to take.”

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