Rugby: Tonbridge Juddians have the edge after Colderick hat-trick

Rugby: Tonbridge Juddians have the edge after Colderick hat-trick
SHADOW PLAY: Murray Galbraith-Lowe scores early on PHOTO: Adam Hookway

TONBRIDGE JUDDIANS came away from their first visit to the Bristol club’s impressive facilities with a tight victory in a great game of rugby.

Dings Crusaders were promoted to National Two South at the end of last season and their new clubhouse and 3G pitch were outstanding.

TJs started brightly and were soon in front as good approach work allowed Will Robinson to chip over and Murray Galbraith-Lowe to gather and score wide right.

Robinson added the extras and shortly afterwards kicked a penalty to put the visitors 10-0 ahead.

Dings looked dangerous in the backs but the TJ forwards had an edge and they made it count as Will Colderick crashed into three tacklers in the Dings 22, spun on release and dotted down by the posts, Robinson again converting.

The TJ defence looked as rock solid as ever but a poor kick found the opposing full-back, whose quick movement of the ball left allowed Dings to attack at pace down a weak flank and score.

The try was not converted but a home penalty was followed by another try to close the gap to two points just before half-time, with Galbraith-Lowe having been consigned to the sinbin.

TJs started the second half well and a Robinson penalty extended their lead again before Dings levelled at 20-20 with another unconverted try.

The game was ebbing and flowing but TJs seemed to have a slight edge. The forwards and backs combined to put pressure on the Dings line and Colderick crashed over for his second try, Robinson converting.

TJs seemed to have made the game safe as an error by Dings in attack gave the visitors a defensive scrum in their own 22. Colderick again exploded from the base and, some 20 phases later, he recorded his hat-trick, Robinson adding the extras.

But Dings responded with wave after wave of attacks and the TJ dam was finally breached to put the home side within reach of forcing a draw.

The final few minutes were played out with TJs holding out and forcing a Dings mistake as they desperately sought another try.

TJs, who remain fifth in the table, now host fourth-placed Taunton Titans in a crunch game on Saturday [November 24, kick-off 2.30pm].

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