The Imperial 1st team travelled to north London last Wednesday to take on UCL’s silly medics, RUMS. We were there for revenge, after losing earlier in the year to RUMS by just three points. The match started with lots of kicking, and both teams were trying to play for territory. Quick hands from Oliver Duffy allowed Josh Pope to make a break down the wing and exert some attacking pressure on RUMS. From a scrum on their five-metre line, Will Aynsley picked, ran ten metres sideways, and scored – 0-5 to Imperial.
This was the strong start that we needed. However, RUMS came back fighting and were able to score after a couple of missed tackles, making the score 5-5. RUMS continued to attack and made a line break from a scrum in our 22, scoring under the posts. We were now 12-5 down.
Fortunately, Amin Omarouayache had been watching the Six Nations over the weekend and had been inspired by Jonny Sexton’s drop goal against France. Using the skills he had acquired from Harry Allingham’s ‘free lessons’ on kicking, Amin slotted one over himself. Unfortunately, we gave away a penalty in our half and RUMS capitalised, making the score 15-8, just before half time.
The second half was just as tense as the first. Our forwards were dominant and made lots of yards by mauling the ball from lineouts (when the referee allowed us to anyway). The pack mauled the ball over the line and Ali Zaboronsky, playing in the second row, nabbed his first try of the game. Amin added the extras, meaning we were now drawing 15-15.
Back defending in our own half, we were caught offside and RUMS scored an easy penalty. Another massive lineout maul from our forwards led to Ali scoring another try. 18-20 to Imperial. I can only conclude that Ali’s talents are wasted playing at number eight. RUMS were awarded multiple penalties from people complaining to the referee when decisions went against us, and this killed a lot of the momentum we had in the match. RUMS scored another penalty and went ahead by one point. Duffy and Pope once again linked up nicely down the wing, and some beautiful offloads allowed Duffy to score. The adulation he received from his teammates after scoring unfortunately gave Duffy some false confidence, and would he foolishly later shave half his head whilst Fiesta Dashing, wrongly believing he could pull off the half-mullet-Skrillex-hairstyle he now has.
Imperial defended hard for the last ten minutes of the game, and RUMS were relentless in attack. Poor discipline lead to easy-target Nathan being sin binned after an accumulation of penalties.
RUMS came close to scoring on a number of occasions, but our defence held strong. The clock went red and RUMS were in possession of the ball inside our 22. This was the last play of the game. We defended desperately as RUMS spread the ball from touchline to touchline, but in the end, there was nothing we could do to stop them scoring. They made good use of their greater numbers and scored from an overlap out wide. RUMS kicked the conversion to make the final score 28-25.
Another three-point loss. Luckily, Fiesta Dash was exactly what the team needed to mend their broken hearts. So close, yet so far; Sylvia remains in hibernation.