Chiswick Gain Revenge in Local Derby

Rugby Result : Chiswick 35 Grasshoppers 15

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Another beautiful day, and lots of open rugby, but neither team could find the cutting edge enjoyed by the visitors in the earlier corresponding fixture.

Grasshoppers started with verve, and were soon up with a well-worked try down the left wing, the winger getting round behind the posts to give an easy conversion.

Chiswick responded immediately, and Matt Small just failed to collect a long cross-field kick by Keith Luckman. Maintaining possession, and spreading the ball, Chiswick were soon level, Josh Nobel finding Ben Cheston at pace, and the full back handing off two would-be tacklers before touching down. Luckman converted. The same two players nearly produced the goods again, but the ball went loose near the Grasshoppers’ line, and somehow it reached Tom Adams, who romped over in the corner. Luckman’s kick was exemplary.

Grasshoppers pulled three points back after an offside decision by the youthful referee from Bristol University, but Chiswick slowly got on top, nicking a Grasshoppers’ lineout, being absolutely solid on their own lineouts and causing problems in the scrums. Rowan Tonkin then took another lineout ball from the oppositions’ throw, and burst through to within five metres of their line. Luca Vannini and Rory Fletcher both dived unsuccessfully for the line before Steff Davies proved the merit of a little extra weight. Luckman’s kick was bad. Between them, Ben Kelly, Simon Hallett and Nobel were keeping the talented Grasshoppers’ outside centre in control, learning from the earlier fixture. Luckman kicked a long penalty with a bullet-like trajectory. A neat chip and catch by the Grasshoppers’ No.10 required Small to put in a good saving tackle, and then Luckman slotted another kick after a high tackle.

Luckman’s first penalty attempt of the second half failed dismally, and after some home pressure, a cock-up in the home defence allowed the dreaded No.13 to escape. Adie Lewis’s tackle half-stopped him, however, and when Grasshoppers got the ball out again, a sad knock-on occurred with the home line at the attackers’ mercy. The next sustained Grasshoppers’ attack culminated in a well-deserved, but unconverted, try for their hard-working No.8. Chiswick countered with a period of pressure, ending with a yellow card for Grasshoppers. A quick think, and Chiswick went for the scrum. An equally quick heel, a pick-up by Fletcher, and Vannini drew the sole defender to put the flying Nobel in for a simple try. The kick was a disaster.

The last try was immaculate, with Nobel crashing thorough in the middle before the ball was caressed into the hands of Sam Biss running down the left touch-line. This pass, by prop Rowan Tonkin, was, according to a section of the home crowd, of a typical “Trevor Smith” type. Luckman’s kick did not quite match it for quality. Lewis had a mazy run which nearly took him through to the line, but the final whistle arrived before any further score.


Chiswick team :- Tonkin, Biss, Davies ( Donaldson ), McCullan ( Joyce ), Hood, Adams, Kelly, Fletcher, Vannini, Luckman, Small ( Gibson ), Hallett, Nobel, Lewis, Cheston


January 16, 2012