THORNBURY Vandals hosted a match against a Chiswick side in memory of the late Rob Tillen, who played for both clubs.

On a day when friendship and the values of social rugby were to the fore, Thornbury were comfortable winners on a day when the rugby was utterly inconsequential.

It was a day which Rob Tillen would have loved to have been involved in, and would have thoroughly approved of.

The match was a fitting tribute to Rob. 

After two minute’s silence, Rob’s widow Anabel started the game and Chiswick wing Callum Main raced in for an early try converted by Roman Zakrevsky. Thornbury hit back shortly afterwards when Steve Allington bisected two defenders to score.

The conversion missed but Simon Weaver and Wayne Underwood combined to put Ben Guzman in for a try. Jon Pullin converted for 12-7.

Allington scored a second before George Maggs powered in for a fourth try. Jon Pullin converted both before Jake Read scored for Chiswick close to halftime. Zakrevsky converted but Thorns led 26-14 at the interval.

Nobby Pearce, now the wrong side of 70 and possessing replacement knee joints, came on for Mike Sander at halftime but with the Stuart Adams – Wayne Underwood – Simon Weaver trio turning the clock back with some outstanding rugby.

Logan Crocombe scored down the right wing shortly before his father Stuart did the same down the left. Underwood scored two late tries, the second of which Pullin converted.

The match was marred by a leg injury to Matt Tewkesbury seconds before the end of the match.

Referee Tony Swash sensibly blew for fulltime. Thornbury were presented with The Rob Tillen Decadence Cup by Rob’s brother Scott.

The match was followed by a tremendous evening of conversation, fun and laughter. Lasting friendships were built and plans were made for Thornbury to travel to Chiswick in the return fixture next season.

Thornbury Vandals 48 Chiswick Veterans 14