Overseas edge out Stompers

These two teams treated the large crowd to one of the best games of rugby between local sides ever seen at Marsa. A speedy, thrilling encounter which was not settled until the final few minutes.

By Mike Turner

OVERSEAS      27

The sides were both prepared to attack from deep, with Stompers distributing the ball wide, through the fine passing of half back partnership of Willis and Zerafa, and Overseas showing excellent combinations of driving, quick thinking offloads to close support.

The Stompers front row were superior which made some of the Overseas possession difficult, but half backs Duffy and Wright managed to release persistent and effective attacks. The Stompers hooker, Sullivan looks a good prospect.

Stompers shoved the Overseas back but Wright launched a good attack, received quick ball form an offload, split the defence with a change of pace and put Downs in for a fine try to open the scoring

Stompers forwards showed fire after their backs won ground and Delia scrambled over to equalize

 Overseas full back took a perfectly timed pass on the burst to break the Stompers centre line and interpassing gave Downs his second try.

Then Overseas failed to catch a high ball which gifted Stompoers some 50 metres and they began a long siege of the line. Overseas Rulli was yellow carded for persistent defence infringements, and despite inspired defending Stompers scored. Quick ball was won at the lineout, whipped across wide with a loop by Zerafa which created an overlap for Galea to score.

Overseas fought back and the game swung from end to end, with a mix of straight hard running and angled interpassing. Overseas prop Camilleri gave away a silly offside by not retreating, Willis placed a good kick in the corner and after a series of rucks and mauls Pace-Moore drove over to give Stompers a 15-10 half time lead.

 The restart, with Overseas now enjoying a backing wind, was a little disappointing in standard as the pressure told, with a lot of inaccurate kicking backwards and forwards. Willis was lucky to stay on the field after what looked like a deliberate trip. Buttigieg of Overseas failed to clear a long ball and Stompers pressed hard. However Overseas defence held steady and drove the ball back upfield.

Wright made a superb run for Overseas, proving himself easily the best fly half playing in Malta today, and released Downs for his hat trick of tries and level the scores.

An odd decision by referee Mr. Busuttil gave Stompers territory and again the forwards worked a series of drives for Ellul to regain the lead.

As the game went on the standard rose again, and Wright chipped a grubber kick through and chased in for the equalizing try.

Duffy managed to waste a certain try for Overseas by failing to see the unmarked man outside him, but Overseas did not give in. They won some good ball and excellently timed passing put Wright in for the winning try, converted by Bolland , which incidentally was the first and only conversion of the afternoon. 

Weekend rugby results:

Ladies: Ben Bennett 7’s Cup
Valletta 26 - Alligators 0
Overseas 0 - Kavallieri 36
Falcons 22 - Overseas 0
Valletta 5 -  Kavallieri 12
Falcons 29 - Alligators  0

Men’s Cisk League
Overseas 27 - Stompers  20
Kavallieri 63 - Valletta 0


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