Camden couldn’t repeat the dose of their last home win when they hosted Shamrocks on Saturday at Wire Lane. The Rams went down 41-10 to the visitors, in what was the curtain-raiser to the now-annual Shute Shield match between Western Sydney and West Harbour.
The early start may have caught the Rams off guard, despite an early penalty to reliable Dane Kelly, the home side were not able to get the momentum they were hoping for against the high-flying visitors. A vocal home crowd, smattered with visitors from both Shute Shield clubs, enjoyed what was an open and free-flowing game, with both sides prepared to throw the ball around in perfect conditions. Ryan Schoupp’s right boot kept Shamrocks in front throughout the afternoon, with 3 conversions and a penalty goal ticking over the scoreboard in their favour, despite the best efforts from the Rams.
Camden’s pack again held their own against a much-heavier pack, often preventing the Shamrocks pack from gaining an advantage at the set piece, with the scrum being evenly contested. The Shamrocks right winger opened the try scoring on 18 minutes, before Schoupp himself crossed minutes later, as the visitors clicked into gear against the Camden side. Shamrocks’ centre Todd McCole scored another try shortly after as the visitors kicked away from the Rams and showed their finals’ potential, as the midway point of the season was reached on the weekend.
Camden winger Grant Iles scored 12 minutes before the break, giving the Rams a hope at 19-10 as the whistle sounded at halftime. Kalem Smith scored for Shamrocks 10 minutes into the second half, extending the lead for the visitors, as they started to flex their muscles and show their class against a Rams side who kept fighting all afternoon.
Camden kept their defence in order in the second half, only conceding three tries in the second half, despite Shamrocks getting the bonus point early in the second half. Shamrocks were comfortable in their win over the Rams, who have seven days to prepare for another tough assignment, as they head to Kiama in Round 10.
Camden will be back at home next weekend, hosting Shoalhaven as the second round of matches begin in Illawarra Rugby. The Rams will look to bounce back from their loss, their second consecutive, and try to upset the unbeaten Shoalhaven side. First Grade will return to their usual starting time of 3.15pm, and the supporters are encouraged to come along and enjoy another fine day of football at Wire Lane.