The 1st XV's interest in the RFU Intermediate Cup ended with two late tries from Farnham who won 29-31 yesterday but only after Gos had played their best rugby of the season so far at a chilly Gosport Park writes Brian Seeney.

Gos had lead for all but three minutes of the game until the 79th minute when Farnham scored the winning converted try having got one five minutes before.

"We lost that through simple errors and making mistakes," confessed Head Coach Barry Bridgman.

"We made schoolboy errors and the last try we gave away was a daft try to give away. But there were a lot of positives to take out of the game.

"It was the best game we have played all season. There were patches of play there that we have been trying to achieve for weeks and some of those things came together.

"At times we played some superb rugby but I think we fell foul of our own misgivings about how well we can play.

"We were competing in the lineout, running well of and off the ball, the scrummage went well and the contact went well and was much more on our terms. Our defence was much better too.

"We were quicker to the breakdown but at the end of the day we didn't do enough and that is a shame."

Gos unveiled a new kicker in centre Dom Holling who "put his hand up" when they didn't have a kicker and was revelation even before the game, when he was our practicing which is a sight not often seen at Gosport Park!

He struck early with the game's first penalty after 2 minutes but Farnham responded immediately by spinning the ball wide and exposing the Gos defence for 3-5.

Holling kicked two more penalties either side of a Farnham yellow card then fly half Rory Penfold's try on 20 minutes, which involved contributions from Holling and Sean Shepherd, took it to 14-5.


FarnCup HeronTry WEB

Alex Heron scores his second try in as many weeks yesterday. Photo: Chris Roberts. More pictures in the Photo Gallery now.

A penalty try for Farnham within six minutes was followed by Holling intercepting to score the second Gos try for 19-12 at the break.

Gos survived a silly yellow card for second row Louis Bristow and full back Alex Heron's second try in successive weeks on 52 minutes stretched their lead to 24-12.

Farnham's battle to get back into the game started on 67 minutes with their third try but Shaun Taylor cancelled that out within four minutes and at 29-17, Gos had only nine minutes to survive.

But two Farnham tries in five minutes ended their hopes.

"Now we've got to bottle that and take it into next week against London Exiles," said Bridgman.

"There is a lot of hope for us next week after this performance. It was much, much better. People wanted to play for each other and play as a team.

"There were four of five stand-out players today and some good success stories.

"It does give me some food for thought choosing the team next week because this wasn't a regular first team. Maybe that's the answer.

"There is a temptation to field an unchanged side but it all depends on who is available and who is not.

"I thought for a long time that we were going to win that until that last try. We had chances and it's a shame we didn't win it."

He was not alone - most of the sparse crowd thought so to except for a handful of delighted Farnham fans who saw their side snatch it right at the end...

For the second successive week, Gos played in a game very well refereed - Hampshire's Richard Smith drawing praise from Bridgman who said the official "allowed the teams to play".

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