Fuge's Throwback

February 1, 2022
February 1, 2022 Albion

Wasps v Plymouth Albion, Saturday, 14th January 1978.

Wasps was one of the new games that fixture secretary Alf Nicholls had arranged for this season. This would be the first time these two clubs had played one another, although they were due to play each other in season 1939/40, but the outbreak of WW2 prevented the fixture from being played. To date, Albion had won 18 and lost 8, with a points tally of 400 to 301.

The Albion side welcomed back young Paul Carter at fly-half from injury, allowing captain Les Ware to revert to his normal position of fullback. Mike Treagust replaced loosehead prop Nigel Redgrave, while future England International and British & Irish Lion, Paul Ackford joined Gary Lovell in the Second Row.

Albion gave Wasps a first-half shock, and by halftime, the visitors led 13 points to 6. There were some in the crowd who thought that the visitors were in for a difficult afternoon, but Albion had pounced on every mistake and were well worth their lead. Albion found themselves behind after 7 minutes when Wasps number 10, England trialist Ian Ball kicked a 40-yard penalty. On 10 minutes Albion were awarded a penalty for a line-out offence, which Les Ware converted from 45 yards. Albion’s spoiling tactics in the breezy conditions were working and when on 37 minutes Iain Perkins pounced on yet another mistake by Wasps, he passed to fellow Centre Malcolm Triggs to score under the posts, fullback Les Ware converting. Two minutes later flanker Richard Catchpole, broke from a lineout and fed wing Russell Rogers who in turn passed to Perkins to score, on the stroke of half-time Wasps number 10, Ian Ball kicked a penalty.

Albion with the wind behind them stayed on top, and their counterattacks were clearly upsetting Wasp’s rhythm. However, 15 minutes into the second half, a high tackle allowed Ball to kick the penalty. Within 5 minutes the Albion three-quarters bought a double-dummy allowing wing David Gardiner to score, bringing the scores level. Both sides continued to play open attacking rugby but neither side could find a winning score. For Albion, Gary Lovell and Paul Ackford dominated the lineouts and the back row of Richard Catchpole, Geoff Harding and Roger Spurrell were outstanding in the loose. Also, in the Wasps Team was former Albion Juniors player, Joe Drake wearing the number 15 shirt.

15. Les Ware

14. Russell Rogers

13. Iain Perkins

12. Malcolm Triggs

11. Ray Westlake

10. Paul Carter

9. Nigel Coombes

8. Geoff Harding

7. Roger Spurrell

6. Richard Catchpole

5. Paul Ackford

4. Gary Lovell

3. Brian Steer

2. David Fuge

1. Mike Treagust.