It was an afternoon where two similar sides in terms of ability, skill and rankings met to do battle. The victors were Hackney who gave that little bit more in every challenge on every part of the pitch. The Gogs defence was the best all season cancelling out Southgate's strengths through hard work and discipline at the ruck. Where we remained steady under pressure and took our hard earned chances they were rattled by our determination and decisions not going their way.

Ollie Relph, probably the most effective player on the pitch for the first forty, deserved to be the one to cross the white wash first. After a long, protracted period of attack by the Gogs he took his chance well and broke the deadlock. Although he retired early in the second half the momentum he helped to create carried on for most of the second half.

This was a game that required vigilance and effort from all fifteen gogs through out. Southgate never gave up and were always capable of turning the game around but the day belonged to Hackney. It belonged to us because every single player did their utmost from Simon, at the heart of every pack play, to Phil Walsh on the wing brave in the tackle and solid in attack. Once again too many mighty gog performances to mention. Tackling in the backs was great from 9 to 15 with all replacements stepping up to the mark. The Phil Ellis, Henry Williams half back partnership gave us a structure that allowed the forwards to play with purpose and the backs to play with confidence.

The front row deserve a special mention. They were mainly responsible for our scrum success. This was the first time I can remember pushing an opposition pack backwards in a scrum. We were lightweight but effective, a little more of Fred's training and we could hold our own in this league. Our set pieces were good this week which put us in a better position both in attack and defence.

So all the hard work finally paid off as we crossed the line twice in the second half. Andy Owen, on both occasions showed his trade mark timing for coming into the line and powering through a gap. Without this clinical finishing our heroic efforts may have come to nothing (as they did against Fullarians) but this was a day for the Gogs to savour and build on.

MoTM: Sam Berkson, pack leader, once again lead from the front. This week his individual skill and effort were equally matched by his ability to motivate and direct. His analysis and encouragement gained the forwards respect galvanising our efforts as the many well meaning if disparate voices became one.