Harlequins take their chances

Rugby Result - Chiswick 5  Harlequins Amateurs 12


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Quins had a territorial edge throughout this close encounter, using their forwards and halfbacks to great effect. They rarely threatened to score, however, and Chiswick, who defended well all through, often looked about to break through. Unfortunately for the home team this was the day of spectacular knock-ons, and with the visitors defending in numbers when the occasional home attack materialised, Chiswick were left contemplating what might have been.

The scrums looked like badly mounted Catherine wheels for a lot of the match, and the resultant slow ball reduced attacking options, although the lineouts were a different matter, with Chiswick gaining good possession from their own ball, usually via Mark Williams. Scrumhalf Glen Ambrose produced a mazy run early on, with the home team on top, but a good chance went with the second of many knock-ons. Wing Adrian Lewis, leaping to his feet after a last ditch tackle, was unlucky to find a hand still round his ankle, and a closely attendant referee.

As Quins applied more pressure, Chiswick’s defence was tested, and it required a good tackle by No.8 Nick Pritchard to stop the Quins wing after a swerving run. The first scoring chance was a penalty for the opposition, but the kick was slightly pulled. On the stroke of half time the Quins No.4 was yellow-carded, but the home team did not want an unfair advantage, so minutes into the second half a home forward prevented release and also went to the opponents’ dead ball line.

Quins maintained the pressure, and after another missed Quins kick the deadlock was finally broken ten minutes into the half when their outside centre managed to bisect the home defence to score under the posts. The kick succeeded. “Chaos” Kruger made a good interception in mid-field, but the attack fizzled out, and soon after Quins missed yet another kick. Chances came and went for the home team.

The referee came to Chiswick’s assistance, spotting a hand restraining Ambrose from following up a kick. Simon Slattery raced forward, tapped and ran, and when held up just short got the ball to the backing-up Matt Vinden, who transferred it to Mike Sampson to score in the corner. Keith Luckman’s kick fell short.

The final few minutes were hectic, but an opportunist try by the Quins fly half, taking advantage of the home team trying to run the ball from deep, turned out to be the final score, although in the final move of the match Pritchard powered through several tackles before getting the ball out to sub wing Dan Coffey, who was collared just short of the line.

Chiswick team :- Donaldson, Nichols, Campbell, Sampson, Williams, Vinden, Maguire ( Pickering ), Pritchard, Ambrose, Luckman, Slattery, Hinze, Kruger, Lewis ( Coffey ), Hammond

November 3, 2005