Chiswick struggle in local derby

Rugby Result :- Chiswick 12 West London 18

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With several forced changes, and with the two first choice scrum halves injured, Chiswick defended well after a poor start, but couldn’t quite produce their normal flashing attacking rugby when they began to get on top.

West London made the most of a turnover ball near the home 22 to set up an early attack, culminating in a try near the posts, easily converted. Chiswick then lost lock Graham Johnson with a detached finger nail, after which they had three props in the front row.

Newcomer John Gibson at inside centre showed early promise, as did Dan Coffey, looking more comfortable on the wing than at his previous position in the centre. With only Ben Maguire jumping in the lineouts, Chiswick did well to get some ball from the throw-ins.

New wing Rory Vere linked well with full back Lewis Hammond in defence, and Mark Jones was prominent in disrupting the visitors’ threes. However, West London went further ahead with a penalty kick before Chiswick finally got into their stride. A late tackle saw a West London flanker in the sin bin, and Chiswick immediately took advantage, With four players holding Jones down, Gibson gave Alistair Pickering a good inside pass. The Chiswick No.8 made ground and passed out to Coffey, who thundered into and through the defence for an excellent try, converted by Keith Luckman.

Chiswick then threw the advantage away with an identical mistake to one of the previous week’s. Throwing long at a five metre lineout requires courage, accuracy and a very solid player with good hands at the tail. Something was not quite right, and West London chortled into an extended lead.

A good move by the home backs saw flanker Graham Robbings nearly in at the corner, as Chiswick started the second half brightly. Steffan Davies was then held up near the line, before a second yellow card was awarded to the visitors. This should have been it, but an awkward fall by the visitors’ scrumhalf as he was tackled from behind by Robbings misled the referee into issuing yet another yellow. With the sides back to equal strength, West London did well to get upfield and kick another penalty.

After a lot of home pressure, a good lineout take and maul by the home forwards led to the ball going along the line to Coffey, who scored in the right corner, the kick proving too difficult for Luckman. Jones, who had found an excellent line, was then held up right on the line after Hammond and Coffey combined ingeniously to put the centre away. Unfortunately he failed to spot prop Kelvin Campbell who was right up in support, and this ( last ) opportunity went begging.

Chiswick :- Donaldson, Pickering E, Campbell, Johnson ( Davies ), Smith, Maguire, Robbings, Pickering A, Wassell, Luckman, Vere ( Miller ), Gibson, Jones, Coffey, Hammond

October 25, 2006