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Overseas power their way to victory

Overseas 38
Falcons 7

A lot was riding on this Cisk Lager League game in which a victory for Swieqi Overseas would take them into a Grand Final against Sliema Stompers for the championship.

Ultimately it was the way Overseas were able turn defence into attack that won the day.

Both sides were missing some of their regular starters and with the wind at their backs, Overseas kicked off looking to get points on the board before half-time.

Overseas went on the attack with their big units Matt Stoker and Matty Jones carrying strongly, giving their backline good ball movement forward and Cameron Brown looking to enter the fray at every opportunity. It was he who scored the first try running strongly to the right. Christian Briffa converted to put Overseas 7-0 ahead.

George Corner, playing at No. 8, scored the next try after his fellow forwards had mixed it up with George Mumphidze and Anthony Harvey breaking the Falcons defensive line, pushing the score out to 12-0 with the conversion drifting away from the posts.

Falcons just could not get any momentum or phase play going and regularly recycled the ball once or twice only for an Overseas player to get a turnover and run it back downfield.

It was from another Falcons breakdown that Brown’s second try of the day came from a wide ranging backline move that saw Briffa convert just before referee Sam Ramage blew for half-time with Overseas leading 19-0.

Falcons kicked off the second half with the ball sailing downfield, backed by a strong wind putting Overseas under pressure close to their line with Tyson Freeman, Andrew Vella and Daniel Holliday on the charge giving playmaker Julian Galea good service.

Galea whipped the ball out to the safe hands of Drinu Vella, who saw Aaron Borg running off his shoulder and fed him a defence-splitting pass to score a fine try that Galea converted to bring Falcons back into the game at 19-7.

Falcons had their best spell in the game at this point, pinning Swieqi Overseas back into their half and Vinnie Cost-Critien in particular saw a number of promising moves undone by the bounce of the ball not going his way.

A Falcons lost lineout on the Overseas tryline cost them dearly as Swieqi ran it back down the pitch with Chris Borg using his speed and swerve to break 80 metres downfield. Just as he was tackled by the last line of defence in Kawara he offloaded to George Corner down the shoulder, who scored an unconverted try to break Falcons’ hearts.

Again Falcons went on the attack throwing caution to the wind, but a pass that held up in a strong gale was swooped upon by Beppe Sammut who ran straight from halfway to put Nicolas Busdrago in for the try, converted by Briffa to make it 31-7.

Overseas were playing with confidence and another long range try was scored by Roderick Borg and converted by Briffa to seal a comfortable win.

Men of the Match: George Corner, Vinne Cost-Critien.

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