Hackney made the lengthy trek to South-west London to face 4th placed Old Hamptonians who were looking to avenge their 34 point loss at Springhill earlier in the season. On a beautifully manicured pitch, OH started brightly and opened the scoring with an early penalty. Good pressure from Hackney bought three penalties as soon came OH were penalised for lying on the wrong side and failing to release the player, as James Hardwick took two of his opportunities to put the away team 6-3 ahead. One of the best Hackney tries of the season came as great handling skills across the team continued fly half O'Hara.s initial break before a strong run by James Dawson saw him run over the OH cover defence and dot down for his 6th score of the season, leaving a simple conversion for Hardwick. Hackney pressurised further with the wind in their favour but couldn.t convert the pressure into points as the Hackney lineout malfunctioned badly, providing rich pickings for OH all afternoon as their front jumper continually got in front of Johnny Crockett.

The second half belonged to OH as they scored three unanswered tries, but key moments didn.t go Hackney.s way. At a pivotal stage of the game, Hackney piled into the OH 22 with close to 10 phases of controlled possession through hefty forwards drives from Ben Chamberlain, Andy Pilkington and John Tully. Scrum half Charlie Davis fired the ball to O.Hara who broke the line once more to be within 5m of the OH line, under the posts. Hackney.s 10 was taken round the neck . unseen by the referee . the ball was turned over and ultimately Hackney traipsed back into their own half. On another day, 3 points would have been there for the taking at a crucial stage of the game.

However, the wind and slope, which had been in Hackney's favour in the first half, were utilised well by OH who capitalised on their local knowledge to outwit the visitors. Two tries came from scrums close in after good work by their, by now, dominant pack and one after Hackney failed to defend close in to a mini-maul. Despite being reduced to 14 men for ten minutes, after John Tully was deemed to have dump tackled an OH player, Hackney still posed a threat with James Rowbottom unable to hold onto the ball with the line at his mercy after a magnificent break by Alex O'Hara. Ultimately some naivety cost Hackney and OH deserved their victory, but such has been the progress shown by the squad this season, that any loss is difficult to take.

After two defeats Hackney need to bounce back next week when they entertain Old Actonians at Springhill. Still sitting in 4th place, a top three finish is within the teams grasp still; however a collective drive needs to be evident come 2.15 next Saturday.

Men of the Match: Ben Chamberlain - the move to 7 suited him as he carried well, tackled hard and looked the best forward on the pitch. A mention too for O'Hara who broke silkily several times and, in defence, piled into OH players with a Johnny Wilkinson-esque relish.