Hands up, that was a bit of a hammering and no complaints from our camp. Sure we didn’t help ourselves in the first half and we didn’t want for effort against a good team heading back to National 2. It is just a shame that – especially after all the noise surrounding the fixture – that we didn’t really show anywhere near what we can do. We were however made to feel very welcome and our hosts were very hospitable and friendly.
Director of Rugby Richie Andrews was honest in his appraisal of the afternoon’s events. “It certainly wasn't our finest hour. Canterbury showed their quality in the opening 20 minutes when to be frank we seemed to be still on the bus. After 30 minutes we eventually started to play and showed we can compete against the best teams in this division. In the second half we actually ended up playing some decent rugby with props Ben Knight and Tom Bristow outstanding”.
The Derelicts pilgrimage to Kent was always going to be a tough assignment and was made all the harder when Matt failed a fitness test in the week to be replaced by twenty year old Fraser McDonald yet another product of the Club’s incredible youth system. Conditions at Canterbury were tricky with strong winds and a slight slope favouring unbeaten Canterbury in the first half. We actually made a fairly decent start and a competitive contest looked likely with Arri prominent as always and Harry Watts and Ian White looking lively in the opening exchanges. It wasn’t to last long. Almost with their first attack of any intent Canterbury’s powerful inside centre found a leaky defence and winger Ricky McIntosh was flying over in the corner. With the weather playing an increasing influence on events on the pitch we were at times our own worst enemy and loose kicking into the gale and serving up a second soft score for Martyn Beaumont. What little momentum we were able to secure was typically snuffed out by a string of successive penalty transgressions and ultimately a yellow card and ten minutes on the touchline for Qin on his return to the land of his fathers. Canterbury were too good a side to not take advantage of the factors building up in their favour and conjured up two further scores from Kelly and Mackintosh to have bagged the bonus point within half an hour. The horror half wrapped up with a fifth try on the stroke of half time this time to van Mol out on the left wing and thirty four nil at the interval.
With the wind and slope we were inevitably far more competitive in the second session and the referee even evened things up further carding a Canterbury player. Richard Lang came on and looked lively at ten pulling off a couple of neat line breaks. But hard as we tried Canterbury didn’t offer the same generosity in defence and the second half remained scoreless for long periods until Jesus showed a tidy turn of pace to canter over from the twenty two. With some self belief from the score Ryan Jeffrey than dabbed a clever kick behind the Canterbury defenders that Terrors latched onto in the corner. Any platform for a Grandstand finish was shot lived as Canterbury again showed their quality and try scoring instincts with two long range scores from Best and Brown. To our credit we plugged away in a losing cause and had the last word with Alrich scampering over to close a miserable afternoon with a consolation score converted by Steve Munford.
Dorking Man of the Match – Ben Knights
Dorking Squad: Tom Bristow, James Catton, Ben Knight, Harry Watts, Armand Roux, Qin Wiseman, Ian White, Ben Lucas, Steve Munford, Fraser Mcdonald, Ryan Lucas, Alrich Muller, James Faulkner, Mike Terelak, Ryan Jeffrey, Freddie Evans, Matt Higgins, Richard Lang