National One: Penalty blow for Wharfedale as Ionians are sunk

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wharfedale conceded a late penalty to lose 27-24 at Blackheath.

A throughly deserved victory in the capital looked on for the Greens as they dominated most of the second half.

Instead of getting a bonus-point fourth try, however, it was Blackheath who levelled the scores with a well-taken try by Simon Whatling. which was converted by Fred Gabbittas.

It was Gabbittas who then stepped up and finished off the visitors with a 43-metre kick to steal the points.

Gabbittas opened the scoring with a penalty but failed to convert after Chris Sewell finished of a clever blindside move for the Londoners.

Dale closed the gap with a catch and drive which saw Chris Howick cross and Jamie Guy convert.

Two more penalties from Gabbittas were followed by Huw Morgan giving Ian Larkin the space to go over. Guy’s conversion made it 14-14 at the break.

Gabbittas struck again before Howick crossed from a catch and drive and Guy added the conversion only for the hosts to grab victory.

Hull Ionians led 14-7 midway through the first half but conceded 34 unanswered points as hosts Esher emerged 40-14 winners at Molesey Road.

Aquile Smith crossed and Ionians were awarded a penalty try after Esher’s first but the hosts were 19-14 ahead by half-time with tries from Ross Neale and Andrew Garner.

Esher replacement Oliver Mines scored a converted try just two minutes into the second half, and it was 33-14 after a penalty try was awarded.

A yellow card for Ionians No 8 Phil Eggleshaw did not help their cause, and Esher made sure of victory when left winger Spencer Sutherland scored a converted try 10 minutes from time.