On reflection, as the pain of defeat slowly dissipates and the prospect of next week's challenge emerges, this was a good game, potentially the best game of the season. The Gogs arrived with a strong side and Hampstead had a team capable of challenging Hackney's supremacy in this league.

It was a strong challenge but one that the Gogs regularly dismissed with good tackling, fierce rucking and dynamic counter attacks putting them two tries ahead by the break.
At this stage there was no reason to believe that the visitors would not continue their dominance in most aspects of the game. Their were warning signs, it must be said, in the first half when the Captain was yellow carded for being off side. Yet it could not be foreseen that a game could be swayed by such an extreme disparity in the penalty count. Hackney conceded over 20 penalties in the second half to the oppositions one or two. Punished severely by a fanatical eye for offside the Gogs in retreat could not regroup quick enough to maintain their previously solid defence. The gaps in mid field were particularly well exploited by Hampstead's most capable back, their number 12, weaved, side stepped and handed off Hackneys desperate defence.

As the rain fell heavily in the last quarter on a frustrated but still determined band of Gogs their previous exhibition of excellent forward and back rugby eluded them. Moments of hard running and intelligent passing came to nothing either by conceding another penalty at the breakdown or a handling error.

The Gogs will take on Hemel Hempstead next week where they will be unequivocally reinstated as the best side in this league.

MOTM: Eimhin Rafferty: inperturbed by the Gogs misfortunes carried on, calm determined and capable.

Special Mention: Kazeem Olayimka showed great potential. He had some great runs especially in the first half and was always eager to get involved.