Chiswick go down fighting

Rugby Result - Old Grammarians 25 Chiswick 17


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Chiswick 37 Old Millhillians 10

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Chiswick 12 Hammersmith and Fulham 21

Team Diff Pts
Hitchin 164 28
Hamm & Fulham 182 26
U.C.S. Old Boys 71 18
Lockside 48 18
Old Grammarians -172 12
Old Actonians -37 11
H. Hempstead -41 10
Old Millhillians -90 10
Chiswick RFC 7 9
Chess Valley -132 8

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The Enfield pitch, with long grass and numerous slopes and gullies, provided a challenge which the visitors just failed to meet in this gruelling league shoot-out.

Grammarians, with a weight advantage, kept to a game plan, playing to their strength in the scrum and maul and being quick up to stifle any open play. Chiswick, with more penetration behind, tried hard for second-phase movements, but failed to get quick enough possession, and made some crucial mistakes.

Grammarians went ahead with an early penalty given for offside. With Chiswick pinned in their own half, the home team kept applying pressure, and eventually the ball went loose in the 22 area, and was smartly picked up and carried over the line. The kick was good. Chiswick came back, and with Elliot Pickering, Marco Chraplewczyk and Mark Jones leading the charge, they reached the home 22 for the first time. Further pressure on the home team, and Pickering suddenly had the ball with only twenty metres to go. No problem. Keith Luckman slotted a simple conversion. Just before the whistle, a long lineout throw was seized by the unopposed Grammarians flanker, who made a strong break, setting up a try in the corner.

A calamity hit Chiswick in the second half. A charged down kick and an unfriendly bounce gave the Grammarians fly-half an opening which led to further unconverted try. Luckman succeeded with a penalty kick. Chiswick were finding it increasingly hard to cope with the home forwards power, and the final Grammarians try came from some excellent mauling. Undeterred, Chiswick took command, and stretched the home defence to the limit. After many attempts had faltered with handling errors or stout defence, a long pass by Luckman found Jones who put Simon Slattery in at the corner. The final kick of the day by Luckman was a super conversion.

Chiswick team:- Donaldson, Nichols, Betts ( Hill ), Hood, Williams, Chraplewczyk ( Smith ), Vinden, Pickering, Ulstein, Luckman, Polanski ( Valentine ), Lovell, Jones, Fraser, Slattery

March 3, 2005