London Skolars 14 London Broncos 42

28th January 2012

Skolars pushed their rivals from South West London for a large part of the pre-season friendly, but the experience of the Super League team told in the latter stages as the Broncos retained the Directors Hospitality Capital Challenge at the Honourable Artillery Company grounds.

Skolars’ coach Joe Mbu was pleased with his charges’ performance. “Playing against the Broncos is a great opportunity for the lads and they enjoy competing against the likes of Craig Gower. The boys worked hard and kept on going; they did themselves proud. We’re still gelling and there’s some healthy competition for the 17 places on the next team sheet”.

Jamie O’Callagahan opened up the scoring for the Super League side, scrambling over in the left hand corner. Skolars looked like they were going to be under the cosh when they were stuck in their 10 metre area for a set of six, conceding a goal line drop out as they looked to clear the line. But a deep kick and a good chance forced an error and the resulting set saw Andy McLean slip the ball out wide to Lameck Juma to power over on the wing.

Luke Dorn and McLean both made 50 metre runs from intercepts, the latter being chased down superbly by Kieran Dixon. Dorn played a hand in the next Broncos’ try, getting the ball out quickly to the wing for Omari Caro to touchdown with Skolars still on the backfoot after Tony Clubb’s earlier run. The full back then got on the scoresheet himself cutting through the centre five minutes before the break.

Both sides rang the changes at half-time. Skolars showed some strong running from the pack, particularly from Louis Robinson and Dave Williams, the latter returning to the field after being smashed in the face by his old colleagues early in the game. Ade Adebisi, returning after knee injury scored out wide early on, McLean’s conversion rebounding off the posts. The next set of six saw Skolars kick deep on the sixth tackle and, when Dorn made a uncharacteristic howler in fumbling the ball, Adebisi was fast on the chase, hacking the ball on, before gathering the ball to score under the posts.

With the margin now down to four points, Broncos regrouped. Juilen Rinaldi showed why he was so popular in his previous spell at The Stoop, with intelligent running and quick distribution upping the pace. Skolars conceded a penalty on the sixth tackle and the pressure of back-to-back sets told as O’Callaghan added a second try. Three minutes later Rinaldi slipped the ball out for Chris Melling to score under the posts.

Full-back James Anthony showed great composure in taking several high balls as the Broncos attacked with regularity. Michael Witt, in his first run out for the Broncos scored their sixth try to add to a 100% record with his conversions. O’Callaghan recorded his hat-trick with the last play of the game to leave a scoreline that didn’t fully reflect the Skolars’ performance.

Skolars have a break this week before the start of the Northern Rail Cup when they take on French side Toulouse Olympique on 12 February.

LONDON SKOLARS

1 James Anthony

5 Aaron Small

3 John Paxton

4 Joe Price

15 Lameck Juma

6 Andy McLean

7 Dylan Skee

8 David Williams

9 Neil Thorman

10 Louis Robinson

11 Matt Thomas

12 Alex Bate

13 Olly Purslow

 

Subs (all used)

14 Tala Petelo

2 Danny Burke

16 Ade Adebisi

17 Chris McNamara

18 Dave Arnot

19 Martyn Smith

20 Austen Aggrey

21 Smokie Junor

22 Jaroslaw Obuchowski

 

Tries: Juma (13), Adebisi (47, 50)

Goals: McLean 1/3

 

BRONCOS

1 Luke Dorn

21 Kieran Dixon

3 Jamie O’Callaghan

2 Liam Colbon

23 Omari Caro

6 Michael Witt

7 Craig Gower

8 Antonio Kaufusi

9 Chad Randall

18 Olsi Krasniqi

11 Shane Radley

12 Chris Bailey

13 Tony Clubb

 

Subs (all used)

14 Julien Rinaldi

5 Oscar Thomas

16 Chris Melling

17 Jason Golden

12 Mason Caton Brown

4 Michael Channing

7 Sam Bolger

8 Rob Thomas

22 Ben Bolger

11 Mike McLeod

24 Lamont Bryan

6 Michael Bishay

 

Tries: O’Callaghan (4,55,80), Caro (30), Dorn (35), Melling (48), Witt (72)

Goals: Witt 7/7

 

Penalty count: 7-10

 

Half-time: 4-18

Referee: Rob Hicks

Attendance: 521

SCORING SEQUENCE: 0-6, 4-6, 4-12, 4-18, 8-18, 14-18, 14-24, 14-30, 14-36, 14-42

To see images from the game just click here


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