Chiswick’s Shock Win
Rugby result-Chiswick 13 Old Priorians 10
It was a flying start, the name of the flier being Joe Grindle, that severely knocked the confidence of previously unbeaten Priorians so that it was only in the dying minutes they really woke up, to provide a thrilling finish. The initial Priorians thrust had taken them up near the home line, where an aggressive Tom Steer had managed to disrupt the attack before Chiswick made their first open-side move. A neat pass put Grindle away, and there was no stopping this irrepressible character in his seventy metre dash for the line. Simon Hallett’s kick came back off the post.
The tackling from both teams was utterly uncompromising, although Chiswick’s No.8 Sam Leslie-Miller managed to make good yards every time he got the ball. Jon Gibson and Reggie Regan worked tirelessly in mid-field, with great support from Riki Darroch and Sam Hood, to keep up continuous pressure on the visitors, making it difficult for the to settle to an attacking mode, although they worked very efficiently at the set pieces. Chiswick’s mauling has been good this season, and they got close to the line from one lineout only to present the ball to the opposition when it finally emerged. Chiswick had an edge in the scrums, but the referee was unhappy about their front row. Priorians thereby gained a few kicks, but generally wasted them either with too much height or with too great length.
Grindle’s pause when receiving the ball, then sudden violent acceleration, took him through the visitors’ defence again, but he was caught near the line, and although Regan got the ball out to Darroch, the latter’s hopeful inside pass found the wrong man. Captain Luca Vannini took a quick tap and go, as Priorians conceded a penalty, but was called back by the referee and Chiswick settled for three points, courtesy of Hallett. Grindle was tested with a kick- not a good idea as he almost retrieved his own neat chip over the opposition as they left a space behind in their eagerness to get to him. Chiswick kept good pressure up until near half-time, but then had a panicky five minutes failing to clear the ball from their own 22.
Chiswick looked likely to score in the corner after another Grindle break early in the second half, but the ball went loose and was booted into touch. Priorians began to get back into the game, and a determined long burst into the home 22 was only stopped when Leslie-Miller got in a tackle from behind on the runner. Darroch had to retire from the fray, to be replaced by Vince Walker, Philip Gray going in to the back row. Priorians now had a good spell, ending tamely with a knock-on, as Chiswick’s defence sustained a thorough examination. A Leslie-Miller surge, followed by a long Regan kick, put Chiswick back on the offensive; Vannini then tried the long kick, again successfully. Chiswick mauled over the line from a five metre lineout, with Hood the reliable catcher, but the ball was totally submerged, hence a five metre scrum. Another maul from the scrum-held up again, but third time lucky, with Jan Joubert emerging triumphantly holding the ball and coping manfully with the back-slaps. A nervy kick went wide.
Chiswick coped OK with the next ten minutes, in which Steer went for glory with an attempted interception, and then received a hospital pass which he and his fellow defenders did well to cope with. The final ten were a different kettle of fish, as a Chiswick substitute was yellow-carded. Priorians took the chance to throw everything at the home defence, and with almost inevitable overlap situations, and slick handling, scored two tries, first in the left corner, then in the right. Luckily for Chiswick, Priorians’ kicker was off form.
Chiswick team :- Shattock, Dibble, Joubert, Hood, Gray, Adams, Darroch, Leslie-Miller, Vannini, Hallett, Steer, Gibson, Regan, Lewis, Grindle. Subs:- Tonkin, Walker, John.
December 4, 2013