Last Saturday, 18th September more than lived up to expectations for Askeans' first league game of the season and first game at the Rectory Field as their 'New Home’ - The Home of Club Rugby.
Whilst the result didn't go our way, a 43- 7 defeat to a strong Sittingbourne team, Askeans gave a spirited performance, showing lots of potential for the future. With better finishing, three more tries would have been a better reflection of the team's performance
The day started with a Pre-Match luncheon. An excellent opportunity for Askeans to meet up once more.
Our Guest of Honour was Mike Lalley, whose donation, in the depths of the pandemic last year, led to the formation of our charity 'Friends of Askean RFC' and became a catalyst for so much that has happened since.
Director of Rugby, Ian Lunn gave a speech, welcoming all to our new Home Ground and an expression of Thanks to Mike Lalley.
It was great to see past players from across the decades supporting Askeans and enjoying the excellent facilities, food, and hospitality of Blackheath Sports Club Ltd.
It was also very special to receive good will messages from past players now living overseas, such as Paddy Norton and Jimmy Russell
'Good luck to the lads In their first outing at the Rectory Field. I loved playing there and hope they do too' Paddy
As for the game, Sittingbourne started strongly and were quickly 3 tries up - 19 - 0. Askeans came back well, applying pressure in the 2nd quarter, going close to scoring several times.
It was very frustrating that on the stroke of half time, an unlucky bounce not only relieved pressure on Sittingbourne’s line but also led to a breakaway try for a 26 - 0 lead.
Once more In the 2nd half, Sittingbourne were quickly Into their stride, again scoring 3 quick tries. and again, Askeans, far from being downcast, showed great spirit in coming back.
They made several drives for the line and eventually overcame Sittingbourne's stout defence, Man of the Match Charlie King going over for a well-deserved try.
A final score of 7 - 43 did not reflect the spirit, enterprise, and commitment Askeans players showed in the game.
On what was a warm autumnal evening, there was a tremendous spirit of bonhomie after the game -
Askeans players and members stayed behind to socialise……
Sittingbourne players and supporters were excellent guests - Askeans Captain Jack Henderson and Sittingbourne's Captain Jamie Talbot shared the duties in announcing their respective Man of the Match and 'Dick' of the Match!….
Askeans Chairman Steve Homewood gave a warm and fulsome speech, welcoming all to Askeans' 'New Home'.
(Apparently!) The players stayed well Into the evening and Marilyn, Blackheath Committee Member - and an excellent advocate for Askean RFC said it was a thoroughly good day, that it was great to have Askeans at the Club and was amazed how everybody mixed.
She did add as well that Askeans players may need some singing lessons!! -
And a final word from our Referee Liaison, Jim Campbell who called Ian Lunn to say -
‘Last night was a great. In fact, the whole day – we thoroughly enjoyed sitting in the Tuckers Bar listening to the revelry going on inside and outside the Club - we could actually feel the happy vibes – we were not just happy, we were overjoyed!
As for the game - at times Askeans played well and the score did not reflect the game. '
This Saturday, we are away to Greenwich.
Our next home game is Saturday 2nd October vs Bexley RFC, preceded by Askean RFC AGM at 1 pm –
Why not come along and have an enjoyable afternoon and evening - and for those of you who are Askean RFC members, why not also attend the AGM and have a say in the future of Askean RFC!