H&B expecting toughest test so far

Calvin Crosby-Clarke suffered a fractured eye socket and concussion during last weekend's win over Snowdown CW.
Calvin Crosby-Clarke suffered a fractured eye socket and concussion during last weekend's win over Snowdown CW.

Hastings & Bexhill head coach Chris Brooks expects the rugby club to face its toughest test of the season so far today (Saturday).

H&B will be aiming to make it three Kent One wins out of three when they entertain Beccehamian. Kick-off at Ark William Parker Academy is 3pm.

Bruce Steadman is also out having suffered two fractures to his jaw last weekend.

Bruce Steadman is also out having suffered two fractures to his jaw last weekend.

Brooks said: "That will be the toughest so far. When we've played them in the past they've always been contenders and they finished above us last season, but we have improved."

H&B top the embryonic league table having won their opening two games, the latest of which was a 12-6 success away to Snowdown CW last weekend when two H&B players were left nursing nasty facial injuries.

Calvin Crosby-Clarke was concussed and suffered a fractured eye socket having been punched by an opponent off the ball after effecting a try-saving tackle.

It later emerged that Bruce Steadman was also badly hurt. A trip to the Eastbourne DGH this week revealed two fractures in his jaw, which required an operation, although the scrum-half hopes to be playing again in four weeks.

Of Crosby-Clarke's injury, Brooks said: "He spent a couple of hours in the Conquest (hospital) when we got home. His eye socket is fractured, which sounds horrific, but it hasn't affected his sight and eye at all.

The concussion means Crosby-Clarke will automatically be sidelined for three weeks and it may well be longer than before his eye socket heals sufficiently to return.

"Ideally I would've liked a bonus point, but in those conditions - it was the heaviest rain I've seen on a rugby pitch in years - it just wasn't going to happen," added Brooks.

"We scored two tries fairly comfortably in the first half and gifted them two penalties as well. Even in the second half at no point did they look like scoring, whereas we had a lot of possession and had the conditions been slightly better, we would've certainly won by more."

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