A&C 1stXV vs. Chingford Match Report
FRUSTRATION AS CHILTERN AS FALL SHORT AGAINST LEAGUE LEADERS CHINGFORD
Chiltern travelled to Chingford to see if they could inflict the first defeat of the season on the league leaders. Frustratingly the boys came up short against a good, solid Chingford side but only after some frustrating decisions that regularly seemed to go against them.
Early field position for Chingford resulted in several penalties being given away by the visitors and it was no surprise that the last of these resulted in a yellow card for Tala Petelo. The offence was committed under the posts and Chingford’s excellent number 10 calmly increased the lead to 10 nil the first score having occurred five minutes previously when a missed tackle had allowed the Chingford 9 to sslice through a gap for the first try which was converted.
Chiltern came strongly back into the game after this and put Chingford on the back foot repeatedly. They were rewarded when after a long break down field was stopped just short of the Chingford line and from the subsequent scrum Chiltern recycled the ball several times before prop Charlie Perkins crashed over in the corner for their first try. Regrettably the first of several frustrating refereeing decisions went against Chiltern when the referee inexplicably decided not to penalise a Chingford player who dived on top of Charlie Perkins with his knees well after the ball had been grounded a significant shoulder injury. It was a yellow card at least and could well have been a red card. With Perkins carrying the injury Chiltern’s scrum struggled for the rest of the first half and it was no surprise when he was unable to continue in the second half.
There had been numerous stoppages following two injuries to Chingford and one to Chiltern when centre Chris Naseby had to be replaced after pulling a hamstring. Just before half-time Chingford scored an excellent try after strong running by their flanker. However just before then of the first half Stuart Pearham kicked a penalty for Chiltern leaving the score 13–8 to Chingford at half time.
Despite having to make those two enforced changes Chiltern started the second half with a bang and from an errant Chingford kick they ran the ball out of their own 22 and got the ball to winger Lloyd Anderson with a little bit of space but still some 70 m from the tryline. We then saw probably the best try of the season as twice Lloyd stood up the covering defence and each time accelerated away before diving over for an outstanding score which was converted by Pearham to put Chiltern in the lead 15–13.
Unfortunately we then had the second frustrating decision when after a scrum near the Chiltern line young prop Callum Newton was punched several times by his opponent. Understandably but regrettably he retaliated with a punch of his own. The frustration was that the referee only saw the retaliatory punch and not the original offence. Callum was red carded which left Chiltern to play with 14 men and uncontested scrums for the remainder of the game.
Matters then got even worse when Chiltern endeavoured to clear their line only to see that kick charged down quite legally. However, in following up the chargedown the Chingford flanker then blatantly knocked the ball on in clear site of everybody but extraordinarily the referee allowed play to continue with the flanker diving on the ball, try given! It was difficult to see how he you could have missed the knock on but the try was given and Chingford led 21–15. Children came roaring back and after 20 minutes reduced the lead to 3 points when Pearham kicked his second penalty.
By this stage Chiltern were forced to make another substitution when centre Pip Blake took a knock to his eye which brought on Dave Francis into the centre. The space afforded to Chingford with only 14 Chiltern players on the field inevitably made space for Chingford and they took full advantage scoring two late converted tries against a final penalty for Chiltern by Pearham.
Chingford were the better side on the day but not by much and the scoreline certainly flattered them. Looking back over the game some over eagerness in defence led to several unnecessary penalties being given away but frustratingly the big refereeing decisions went against Charlton on the day. The attitude and the commitment of the team in adversity was admirably good and whilst they were clearly disappointed with the result they know that Chingford are beatable and will look forward with relish to the return fixture in the New Year.
Next Saturday Ruislip are the visitors. They are mid-table but clearly a capable side particularly attack and Chiltern will need to be at their best to get back to winning ways. With the clocks having now gone back, kick off will be at the earlier time of 2:30 pm which will be preceded by the 21st anniversary lunch hosted by ex-president Clive Newton. The price of lunch is a very reasonable £10 per head so do come along and support both the lunch and the team in the afternoon.