IT’S ALL MONMOUTH IN A PITCH BATTLE

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They came. They saw Van Halen. They conquered the American rugby club with which they share a name.

The Monmouth Rugby Football Club of Monmouthshire, Wales, crushed the Monmouth Rugby Football Club of Shrewsbury Avenue 47-15 at Thompson Park in Lincroft Saturday.

“It was a lot to a little,” said Red Bank coach Brian Difiore, “and we were on the little side.”

PissersThe visitors mark their new territory.

But as much as it was about bragging rights, the game — er, match — was the culmination of a the first-ever all-Monmouth day, one that would end at the Red Bank clubhouse on Shrewsbury Avenue with a good deal of camaraderie and a great deal of beer.

For the visitors, who arrived early last week and left for home Sunday, “it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” said Andy Pook, a Welsh rugger who’s a police sergeant back home.

He and his teammates heaped praise on their Red Bank hosts, the hotel (the 73-man squad stayed at the Oyster Point), and Donovan’s, where, just because they could, some of the ruggers dressed up in costumes: hippies, Elvii and cast members of ‘Grease,’ among them.

“It’s been an excellent time,” said Pook.

Img_8421The Welshmen, in stripes, make nice with the Americans post-match.

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