Well we were in the semi finals but we still had one league match left to play against our old local rivals Warriors RC. We had kept up our hard training and we were ready for this game and fully confident of victory. The game started as usual at a hundred miles an hour with both teams fighting hard. We put some early pressure on WRC which resulted in a penalty which Petri converted. And like we knew they would, WRC came at us strong and scored a try to take the lead. But that day was our day and we went straight on the attack from the restart and pressured them into a knock on, from the resulting scrum I broke away and beat the defence to score and put us back in the lead. The rest of the half was a real dog fight with both teams giving it their all. Ville scored a fine try using his big frame to force his way over the line to give us a 15 to 7 lead but WRC were not letting us have it all our way and they scored another try just before half time leaving it 15-14 to Helsinki. Well the crowd were definitely getting their moneys worth!
The second half started as the first did and there were some big hits going in, especially from Avea and Thierry in defence. And the forwards were in fine form, it was big Sampsa's last game for us this year and he didn't disappoint - even after he picked up a back injury he stayed on for another twenty minutes, such was the commitment of all HRC players that day. Now I can't remember in what order who scored but WRC scored two more tries and so did HRC. After an intelligent intercept from Tony, Ville scored another try - again using his size to his advantage and powering his way over the line, and I scored another try with a little help from Henry who drove me through two WRC defenders from a pick and go close to the line after some great attacking runs from HRC. HRC were now in the lead 29-28 with about ten minutes left and the big hits were still coming from both sides. WRC tried their hardest to break us down but I'm proud to say that they didn't even get a kickable penalty from us and we held on for a well earned victory against our old rivals. For the club this was a big win as now we had won 3 in a row and it felt good.
Lots of players put their hands up for man of the match with great shows of courage and commitment, like Sampsa, Ville and Avea but the man of the match for that game was our French flanker Flo who had great game and was involved in everything from attack to support running, to winning lineouts, so well done to Flo for a great performance, hopefully there will be a lot more.
I would also like to give a mention to Petter, who only started to play rugby this summer and when he was asked to step up and help out the first team, which he did more than once, he always gave 100%. And in this game he started at second row which is no easy task even for a veteran flanker to do, but like before he gave 100% and played with great energy and commitment before he got injured in the second half. So well done Petter its great to see new members show such heart and fighting spirit.
Match report by Michael Kennedy