Grissing off to a flier in try hat-trick
Pertemps Bees 17Rotherham Titans 31
ROTHERHAM'S new era directed by coach Phil Werahiko was launched in dramatic style by Irish winger Stephen Grissing, who scored a hat-trick of tries on his debut in National One.
While the tries by the 22-year-old from Dublin established the foundations for Rotherham's win on the opening day of the new league season,credit overall must be given to a solid team performance.
What made Grissing's debut all the more remarkable was that he wouldn't have been playing if first choice left winger,Geoff Griffiths, had been fit.
However, he hurt an ankle in training on Thursday night, so Grissing, one of the intended replacements, was thrown into the deep end.
The ex-Leinster A and St.Mary's RUFC winger took his scoring opportunities well as Roth's backs handled the ball impressively.
"I'm delighted, I was thrilled to get the call-up, so to get a few tries is a bonus," he explained.
"I didn't play all that much last season for Leinster A, so I wanted to come here to get as much game-time as I could.
" I think the whole team played really well, but we should have finished off a few more chances.
"We need to be more clinical in the future."
Rotherham were trailing 17-7 after 15 minutes and new coach Werahiko was understandably relieved and satisfied to watch his team achieve a confidence-boosting victory in their first game in National One.
"We played a lot of good rugby and we can build on this performance.
"Our style was different from what our supporters have seen in the past.
"We made a number of errors in the first half…the sort of mistakes we hadn't been making in training.
"But I was delighted with the way the scrum went. We had enough guys out there who were experienced in National One. Guys like Michael Whitehead and Louis McGowan led the charge.
"They all played important roles in terms of leadership. They are not the sort of characters who stand back.
"As for Grissing, he did extremely well.
"He's a good finisher and used his strength to get to the try line."
Rotherham's first home match of the new season is on Sunday against Nottingham, at Clifton Lane (kick off 3pm).