Rugby: Upminster 32 Billericay 15
PUBLISHED: 18:00 06 November 2018
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Upminster made it six straight wins with derby success over Billericay in Essex League Division One on Saturday.
The hosts expected a stern test at Hall Lane and, although they dominated play in the early stages, they came up against a strong Billericay defence.
After conceding numerous penalties, particularly at the breakdown, Upminster were caught napping as Billericay opened the scoring with the first try of the game, which was unconverted.
Upminster’s Matt Nunn kicked a penalty to within five metres of the line to set up a good platform for attack and a maul from the lineout led to George Cox peeling away on the blindside to touch down.
Chris Lamb converted from out wide to make it 7-5 and added a penalty soon after, before Dan Canary fended off several defenders and found Grant Lowe, whose deft hands released Luke Potter to race in from 40 metres.
Strong carries from Alfie Simmonett and Jake Jones went to waste as the final pass eluded Upminster too often, but Lamb landed another penalty before Matt Munn chipped over the Billericay defence and dotted down in the corner.
Another Lamb conversion made it 25-5 at half time, but Upminster gave away penalties after the restart and Billericay scored a try from a maul.
The visitors then applied pressure and eventually created an overlap for a try in the corner to cut the gap to 10 points as Upminster were being starved of possession.
But the hosts rallied and strong play in the forwards from Lowe led to excellent field position, with Cox going under the posts for a try converted by Lamb to complete the scoring and secure a bonus point.
Harry Long was named man of the match for Upminster and director of rugby Scott Murphy said: “We were grateful for the bonus point win but not happy with the display. Billericay proved to be a strong opponent and we look forward to visiting them in the new year.”