FIRST team coach Sean Millwaters believes that a double leg break to the opposition’s replacement flanker played a key part in Supermarine’s Senior Vase loss last Saturday.

Supermarine were 13-10 down with 15 minutes left when Gosford All Black’s Rich Cook broke both his tibia and fibula causing the game to be stopped for 45 minutes.

Millwaters told the Advertiser: “You know the conversation they’d have had, let’s do this for Rich and so forth.

“I don’t want to take anything away from the guys. We dominated them for those last 15 minutes, they threw everything into defence and didn’t really try and attack.”

“The game was very close, it was like two very equal teams having an arm wrestle.”

Playing for a place in the Southern Counties Senior Vase Final, Supermarine fell behind to an early unconverted try and a penalty in the first 20 minutes.

After Gosford’s flanker was sin-binned Millwaters team fought back with a penalty from fly half Stuart Dawson. The tie was then turned on its head as wing Stuart Doughty intercepted inside his own 22 and ran in for a 70 metre try. Dawson added the conversion to give Supermarine a 10-8 lead at the half.

“At eight down after 20 minutes it was a case of we’ve got turn this around.” Millwaters said.

“At half time we came in and said this is going to be a hard 40 minutes of rugby.”

With 20 minutes remaining Gosford’s centre Jack Briggs cut in from the right before going over in the corner to retake the lead for his side. Supermarine were chasing the try that would have given them the win when Cook suffered his leg break.

Millwaters wished Cook a speedy recovery on behalf of the club adding the game was of a good nature and the incident was accidental.

Millwaters was disappointed with the result though he thought it could easily gone the other way.

“If the game was played 10 times we’d win five and they’d win five.

“I think it shows how we’ve come on from last season. They’re challenging near the top of their respective league and I’m proud of the way we fought.”