Forwards Lead in Chiswick Victory


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Result :- Chiswick 20 Dover 16

This match featured great tackling (both sides), superb kick-offs ( Dover) and powerful scrummaging (Chiswick. After five matches, there is only one point separating the five teams, including Chiswick and Dover, which are above the bottom one in the League. Chiswick never looked like getting the four tries necessary for a bonus point, but pleased coach Adrian Hoile with their performance, much improved over last week’s.

Chiswick started brightly, and a long lineout throw found Tom Dean in space. Revving up, he charged twenty yards forward into the visitors 22 before losing the ball in the tackle. Almost immediately one of the Dover back row sped through the middle of the Chiswick line in retaliation, and was stopped only at the last moment by a great tackle by Chiswick outside centre James Bunbury. (He and his co-centre Dan Godfrey worked well together from the start, their tackling being exemplary). With Jon Joyce taking a clean catch at the next Chiswick lineout, they were able to set up a good rolling maul before the ball was passed out to Bunbury, but the next pass went loose as Chiswick stormed into the Dover 22. Dover then infringed and gave Chiswick a good chance for points, but Hallett’s penalty kick was pulled left.

The Chiswick pack soon showed their superiority in the scrums, but attempts at mauling, although gaining ground, kept on being stopped with the ball in the air by the streetwise Dover forwards. Chiswick managed to return the compliment, and then produced one of their trademark multi-phase attacks, with scrum half Sam Broderick prominent at the beginning, the move being carried on by Hallett and Joe Grindle. This led to another penalty, slotted comfortably this time by Hallett, to open the scoring. The excellent kick-off by Dover was caught by one of their own players, but Chiswick soon squashed the attack, and a burst by Grindle, Sutherland and Bunbury looked very promising, until a foot went into touch. Going off the feet gave Dover a chance to level the scores, which they did. James Dibble scorched down-field at the kick-off, and secured the ball for the home side. The ensuing attack was thwarted, but the clearance kick was meat and drink to Grindle, who side-stepped his way through the defence, before finding wing Dan Purkiss, on the inside shoulder, with a one-handed flip. Try under the posts, and Chiswick 10-3 up.

Dover immediately responded with another catch of their own kick, leading to a successful penalty kick. Chiswick came straight back, a touch kick from a penalty leading to sustained pressure on the Dover line. With everyone up, however, Chiswick were vulnerable to the counter-attack, and a smart interception provided the spark. Excellent covering back just snuffed this one out, with Grindle successfully second guessing their speedy wing but giving away a penalty for offside. This was kicked to touch, but minutes later another easy penalty kick reduced the lead to one point. Hallett had a chance from a long way out to extend this, but his kick hit the left post and stayed out.

Dover came out with all guns blazing, and Chiswick were lucky that their opponents committed a technical foul at a five metre lineout, having been generally very efficient in this discipline. With continuing Dover pressure, a Chiswick forward got yellow-carded, after Dover had appeared to have scored, but had committed some offence on the way. Luckily for Chiswick Dover finished up with a scrum, and with a mighty shove from the home pack, Hallett emerged with the ball. Godfrey took the ball on, and then kicked long upfield. Bunbury was first to the ball, but was tackled painfully from behind, and had to go off. Chiswick, now on the attack, tried another maul after a good lineout take by skipper Sam Leslie-Miller, and Dean came out of it with the ball and proceeded to rumble slowly over the visitors’ line for his first try. Hallett added the points, with a splendid kick from near the right touch-line.

Chiswick mucked up the kick again, but gained confidence as Dover failed to take advantage. Simon Allen-Clarke did well to take a Dover lineout throw in front of their jumper and Chiswick moved back into the Dover half. Hallett soon had a chance to extend the lead with a penalty kick, which was successful. Chiswick and Dover then exchanged basic mistakes in a nervous passage of play. Hallett just missed a long penalty kick, but for the first time in the match Chiswick, in the guise of Jon Joyce, got control of the kick-off. With nail-biting minutes to go Hallett’s long pass nearly got intercepted, and then Chiswick picked up another yellow card. Hallett just held up one player short of the line, but after many probes the Dover wing skipped over a tackle to score a try, quickly converted. The one minute signalled by the referee at the kick-off seemed to last for ever, but Dover failed to score again before the final whistle.

Chiswick team :- Shattock, Dibble, Dean, Watene, Allen-Clarke, Joyce, Biss, Leslie-Miller, Broderick, Hallett, Purkiss, Godfrey, Bunbury, Sutherland, Grindle; Parmeter, Blendell, Steer

October 5, 2015