Cinderford produced a simply stunning performance in a 14-try demolition of Henley Hawks.

In glorious sunshine it was the home side who applied some early pressure, but they were unable to breakthrough a solid Cinderford defence and the visitors moved steadily upfield to set up an attacking lineout, which led to their opening try from hooker Nathan Taylor.  Some excellent handling created the next score for winger Kai Little, which James Moffat converted, before a fine run from Little led to a third try from Matt Lane, again converted by Moffat.

Henley opened their account with a Connor Murphy penalty, but Cinderford secured their bonus point soon afterwards, when No8 Harry Hone forced his way over, then just before half-time some more great defence from the visitors saw the ball go loose and a kick ahead and chase saw Little score his second try, again converted by Moffat to make it 33-3 at the interval.

If Cinderford’s first-half performance was impressive in the second-half it was exceptional with nine further tries being scored through a mixture individual skill and outstanding teamwork.
Liam Hemming raced over under the posts, before Reuben Norville outpaced the cover defence to score try number seven. Terence Babarinsa showed good strength to shrug off an attempted tackle and go over, then Hemming scored his second another outstanding effort. Moffat landed all four conversions.  Henley gained some brief respite when a quickly taken lineout resulted in a try for Harry Burn, which Murphy converted.

There was no stopping Cinderford though as the tries continued to flow, Moffat touched down, before Lane showed his pace to score twice, and complete his ‘hat-trick’, Norville crossed for his second, before Dan Broady also went over, with Moffat kicking two more conversions.  Tom Emery scored a late consolation try for the Hawks, which Murphy converted, but it did little to detract from a hugely impressive Cinderford display.

Cinderford; James Moffat, Kai Little, Terence Babarinsa, Jack Hayes, Reuben Norville, Liam Hemming, Jimmy Williams, George Porter (Capt.), Nathan Taylor, Tim Brockett, Jack Shields, Dale Lemon, Matt Lane, Aaron Ryan, Harry Hone.

Replacements; Joe Smart, James Elliot, Roger Birkin, Dan Broady, Alex Frame.

One response to “Henley Hawks 17-90 Cinderford”

  1. Dave Bradley says:

    Excellent write up from Henley…..



    Tries: Burn 61, Emery 80

    Conversions: Murphy 61, 80

    Penalties: Murphy 29


    Tries: Taylor 16, Little 24, 40, Lane 27, 69, 72, Hone 34, Hemming 43, 54, Norville 47,76, Barbarinsa 56, Moffat 63, Broady 80

    Conversions: Moffat 24,27,34,40,43,47,54,56,72,80


    Star Man: Kai Little (Cinderford)

    Referee: Jack Lewers

    Attendance: 280

    Halftime scoreline: Henley 3 Cinderford 33

    By Nick Pitson

    It was a day to forget at Dry Leas on Saturday as visiting Cinderford ran in 14 tries and with it dealt a 90-17 drubbing to the Hawks, one of the heaviest ever league defeats in Henley’s history.

    Even the visiting supporters were surprised at the margin of their victory, but they were following a side who were well organised and far superior in skill, speed and strength. In contrast, the Hawks seemed to have learned little from their defeat at Chinnor last week. Their defence was ripped apart on numerous occasions and the tackling, such a strong part of their game in recent seasons was at times non-existent.

    But for all Henley’s problems, it must be Cinderford who are applauded for a highly impressive performance that will rightly see them installed as one of the favourites for the league title.

    Early on, the Hawks gained parity with their visitors and started brightly and had they taken an early overlap opportunity, things may have been a little different. Tom Hall and Dave Hyde were prominent for the Hawks but Cinderford were well organised and snuffed out any Henley chances.

    It took the visitors a quarter of an hour to register their first score, a driving maul finished by hooker Nathan Taylor. Full back James Moffat kicked the first of his twelve conversions.

    The visitors began to look the more dangerous side as Henley struggled to contain the men from the Forest of Dean and a loose kick from the Hawks was collected by Kai Little who ran back through some weak tackling to score his sides second try.

    The Hawks can justifiable feel aggrieved with Cinderford’s next attack when the visitors winger appeared to drop the ball following a Connor Murphy box kick. The Hawks stopped but the referee adjudged the ball to have gone backwards and Little again broke clear to allow Matt Lane to cross for an easy try.

    Henley got on the scoreboard with a Connor Murphy penalty but the visitors were now looking threatening at every opportunityand ran in two more tries before the break. Number 8 Harry Hone finished off a series of drives before a loose pass in a Hawks attack allowed Little to hack the ball clear, run 60m and show good skill to control the ball and touchdown. Cinderford led 33-3 at the break.

    Henley have produced two good second halves so far this season but any thoughts of a revival here were not forthcoming. The Hawks dropped the ball from a forward drive straightaway and from the resulting scrum, Taylor and Hone made the hard yards before Liam Hemming ghosted his way through the Hawks defence to score.

    The Henley backs, although having a few chances, in contrast looked laboured and lacked any real threat or penetration. Weak defence then allowed three more Cinderford tries from Norville, Hemming (again) and Barbarinsa.

    The visitors then appeared to have their own lapse in concentration when Hawks Connor Murray took a quick line out just inside his own half and fed winger Harry Burn who raced 60m to score under the posts. Murphy converted.

    Cinderford replied immediately with a try from full back Moffat.

    The last 10 minutes just compounded things for the Hawks as their defence fell apart and Cinderford ran in four more tries. The best try of the game was finished by Lane following some excellent passing and support play before further tries fromLane (again), Norville and Broady added to the Hawks despair.

    It is difficult to find many positives after such a heavy defeat, but the Hawks forwards kept going and they had the last word when a strong drive by Dave Clements set up hooker Tom Emery who crashed over for try in the last play of the game. Connor Murphy converted.

    Cinderford are now many people’s favourites to challenge for the league title but it was a sorry day for the Hawks, one of the worst in their league history. There will be a lot of soul searching in training this week but they must pick themselves up and prepare for the visit to Kent next week to face one of the leagues newly promoted sides, Tonbridge Juddians who themselves scored a good victory at Clifton on Saturday.

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