Chiswick Roll On While Hemel Try To Reorganise

Rugby result - Chiswick 70 Hemel Hempstead 5

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A Hemel side in the throes of reorganisation could not give a rampant Chiswick side much of a game, but held their nerve throughout the massacre, and finally scored just before the end.

The first scrum indicated the way things would go, as Hemel buckled under pressure at the right side of their 22, and Chiswick No.8 Sam Leslie-Miller had ample room to flick the ball to Sam Biss, who found Jon Gibson on a clever diagonal run for the left corner. Joe Grindle was up in support and that was try No.1. Simon Hallett produced his first missed kick of the game, but this one was a little more difficult than a number which followed.

Tries came at regular intervals through the first half as Chiswick got ample supply of ball from the set pieces (Matt Pickering and James Dibble forming a good team at the lineouts) and from turnovers. It was Leslie-Miller, however, with an acrobatic take at the tail of a five metre lineout who set up the maul from which Jan Joubert scored the next try to take the score just into double figures after eight minutes. With some weak Hemel tackling, every Chiswick player wanted to run at them, and Jon Joyce nearly got right through from some way out. Luca Vannini then grabbed the ball and whipped it out to the predatory Grindle. Ignoring the apparent overlap outside, an instant calculation told him he could make it to the line, so he did. This one Hallett converted.

Reggie Regan picked up the bonus point try after slick handling by Joyce, Gibson and Hallett, but the kick was poor. After a neat blindside move, captain Vannini gave the next scoring chance to the hardworking Dibble, who accepted the offer to make it 27 points. This time the kick was good. Hemel produced an attack at last, only to waste the chance with a kick straight to Tom Steer, which he returned with interest. Chiswick then held up a maul long enough to gain a scrum, from which a set move between Gibson and Steer set the latter away. Two neat swerves past defenders took the speedy winger to the posts, so Hallett had an easy conversion. The last try of the half was Regan’s second, courtesy of a quick tapped penalty by the ubiquitous Rikki Darroch, and good follow-up work by Joyce, Shattock and Lewis.

Some brave work by the Hemel No.8 behind a rapidly retreating scrum took a bit of pressure off the visitors’ defence, but a missed touch-kick gave the ball straight back, and after a number of phases, Grindle took charge again and weaved his way to the posts for his hat-trick. Hallett got the conversion. With Chiswick now playing Champagne Rugby, Regan completed his hat-trick after Shattock had rescued a long lineout throw, and Grindle got yet another try after a sustained period of home pressure. Both kicks failed.

Hemel now pressed but got held up on the line, Regan eventually putting in an excellent long touch kick to put Chiswick back in the Hemel half. Dan Sutherland, who had replaced a wounded Gibson, had produced a vital tackle earlier, but now went looking for the ball, and finally got a scoring pass from Hallett, who then failed with the kick. Unfortunately Sutherland was injured going over the line, meaning a bandaged Gibson had to return to the fray. Darroch thoroughly deserved his try, opportunistic though it was, when a misdirected Hemel throw-in found him only lightly marked in a five-metre lineout. Jubilation was in the dive, and Hallett, catching the mood, slotted the kick. The final five minutes belonged to the never-say-die Hemel team, and their try was well-deserved. 


Chiswick team :-   Shattock, Dibble, Joubert, Joyce, Pickering, Biss, Darroch, Leslie-Miller, Vannini, Hallett, Lewis, Gibson, Regan, Steer, Grindle.   Subs:-  Tonkin, Walker, Sutherland



March 3, 2014