Chiswick Kicks Off Season With Home Win

Rugby Result - Chiswick 21 Old Alleynians 11

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The leaders of Herts/Middx 1 and Surrey 1 met in this EDF Energy Junior Vase match, and a close match it was.

The visitors opened brightly, running the first kick-off straight back, and their full back was only just stopped in the Chiswick 22. Four minutes into the game a simple threequarters move breached the home defence for Alleynians to go 5-0 up.

The first real break for Chiswick came from centre Ben Cheston, but his attempted pass to Mark Jones was intercepted, and the home team did well to prevent a clean break. Chiswick progressed downfield, and a move involving Hansie Bez and “Tubs” Davies led to the latter surging for the line, only to be tackled just short with an overlap outside. Keith Luckman then had a penalty kick come straight back off the near post. Alleynians went further ahead with a penalty after Chiswick were adjudged guilty of deliberately knocking on an intended pass.

John Gibson and Cheston were taking a lot of hard tackles in mid-field as Chiswick rather telegraphed their moves. The Chiswick pack was beginning to take charge, however, with the dynamic back row causing lots of problems. No.6 Alistair Pickering did a bit of robbing after the Alleynians’ full back had been caught in possession, and Luckman put a beautiful kick into the resultant hole for Cheston to run onto and score. Luckman added the points with a good kick from way out.

Jones and Sam Hood had good runs at the Alleynians defence, but it remained obdurate until Bez produced a bit of magic and released the twinkle-toed Chiswick scrum half Nico Frier down the right touchline for a splendid score in the corner, which brought the crowd, alight. Luckman’s kick was spot on, and Chiswick were six points up. The Chiswick tackles were still flying in, with Pickering and Gibson prominent as the visitors’ backs strived for an opening, being given a fair share of the ball by efficient scrum and lineout work. Gibson eventually took one knock too many and Lewis Hammond replaced him.

Near the beginning of the second half a break by Graham Robbings led to a typical Jones run, but the move fizzled out, and from then on the game was punctuated at regular short intervals by the whistle as both sides tried too hard, with many resultant minor infringements. The Alleynians’ fly half was achieving a good distance with his defensive kicks, and Chiswick remained thwarted in their attempts to get close to their opponents’ line. Chiswick lock Aran Delaney did well to grab a loose ball produced by a thundering Pickering tackle and put Rupert Merritt away down the left wing, but he was soon bundled into touch.

Some loose defending got Chiswick into trouble, but their forwards rescued the situation with some magnificent scrimmaging. The next score, for Alleynians, came from an easy penalty kick, but Chiswick were finishing the stronger team, with Elliott Pickering on for Joubert, Tom Adams for Robbings, and Marco Chraplewczyk for Shane Donaldson. A period of sustained pressure involving most of the home team in a series of passes culminated in a somewhat bizarre try, as Frier latched on to a loose ball, and failing to locate the support had no option but to zip right through a tiring defence on his own and to make the game suddenly look as easy as the resultant conversion.

Chiswick team :- Donaldson ( Chraplewczyk ), Joubert ( Pickering E ), Davies, Hood, Delaney, Pickering A, Robbings ( Adams ), Bez, Frier, Luckman, Merritt, Gibson ( Hammond ), Cheston, Jones, Lewis

October 15, 2007