Rugby Result - Chiswick 17 London Cornish 26
Friendlies are often more difficult to referee than league matches, and this was no place for the faint-hearted. Chiswick started by applying intense pressure, their confidence buoyed by recent results and the return of a hungry Mark Jones in the centre. Grim defence kept the Cornish line intact however.
Matt Vinden and Matt Pickering gained good lineout ball for the home team, but the threes looked far from fluent, although Jones made a couple of scintillating breaks, and scrum-half Alistair Pickering ( one of three brothers playing ) got over the line, but was held up. The deadlock was broken finally when Keith Luckman slotted an easy penalty kick, but the visitors came straight back, and their centre took advantage of some slack defence to race away and just make it to the corner for an unconverted try.
The second half was notable for the number of subs used by the home side, several necessitated by injuries. The sub hooker, Gallogly, got some good tackles in, but the Cornish winger managed to take his own subtle chip kick and set up a good try for his centre. This was converted. At this stage Chiswick brought on their leading try scorer, Simon Slattery, and he immediately made an impact on the game. New boys Glen Joss and Matt Hopkins combined to set up a second phase wherein Matt Pickering got the ball out to Jones whose pass sent Slattery through for what appeared to be an easy try. Luckman produced a good conversion.
Seconds later, a simple move comprising a long pass out by sub fly half John Hall to Sam Brown, and a short ball to Slattery coming through the middle led to the latter touching down under the posts for Luckman to put Chiswick five points ahead.
Territorially, Chiswick remained in control, but the visitors were always dangerous on the counter-attack. After the referee had deemed a fairly lateral final pass forward to deny Cornish a try under the posts, he allowed a blatant forward pass to compensate, and the conversion put Cornish ahead. With time running out, Chiswick ran everything, and should have scored but for a mix-up in the calling, the final pass going in to space rather than to a player. Cornish then wrapped it up, an overly ambitious long pass in the home 22 being intercepted. The dropped conversion was followed by the final whistle.
Chiswick team :- Donaldson, Pickering E ( Gallogly ), Campbell ( Betts ), Pickering M, Chraplewczyk, Vinden ( Hopkins), Rhodes, Smith , Pickering A ( Hall ), Luckman, Joss ( Smal ), Jones, Brown ( Stevens ), Smythe ( Slattery), McFarlane (Barnes)
December 1, 2005