The new year brings no change - another victory for the 2XV
Chiltern 2XV ignite a Christmas Pudding of a performance to run away deserved victors
Chiltern's glorious men of the 2XV ran in 8 tries against a solid Reading side who fought valiantly throughout.
As the team's took to the field it was clear which players had enjoyed the festive period more than others, although a certain Ryan Greensleeves maintained disciplined in his role of playing the Christmas fairy.
The first half was a scrappy affair with neither side asserting in particular dominance until a good defensive kick chase led to a dropped ball by Reading on their 10 metre line, allowing Robert Hill to expertly kick through (twice) and out pace the covering Reading defense to score. Try converted by Jack Kenyon, 7-0 to Chilts.
The Reading 10, who had been putting the Chiltern defense under pressure with some lovely kicks since the start of the game, showed his class by producing a deft cross field nudge to put the Reading right Wing in the corner. Missed conversion, 7-5 Chilts.
Jack Kenyon is never far from the action and scored two more tries before half time with typically aggressive runs, seemingly from nothing to put Chiltern in control. A mixed bag with the conversion meant the half finished 19-5.
After an inspiring team talk from club legend Alan Simmons, with particularly emphasis placed on securing the rucks Chiltern set about stepping up their game. It did not have the desired affect....
Reading scored quickly from an over lap out wide (as far as your reporter can remember) and closed the score with a converted try to make the score 19-12. However, Chiltern responded in typical fashion with 5 more tries.
First Ed Green went over, followed swiftly by a try for debutante Charlie Perkins who was the recipient of some lovely work from the line out. Paddy Esson threw expertly to the back of the line, Joe Batt caught and flicked the ball down the marauding beast Johnny Rice, who delightfully fed Ollie Lansdowne. The resulting ruck allowed quick play and a strong drive over the line by Perkins. With Kenyon missing the conversion for the Green try, Ryan Greenstreet took over the duties and obliged with the extras. 31-12 Chiltern
Michael Brothers got in on the act with a try converted by Greenstreet (38-12) before the moment of the game that awoke the home crowd from their post Christmas slumber and misery.
With Kenyon clearly 2nd in the kicking game against his opposite man, an almost identical cross field kick was attempt only for the ball to go dead. The resultant 22 drop out was gleefully received by the impressive specimen that is second row Johnny Rice. A quick look up to see the worried look on his girlfriends face, he knew something special was required. Crabbing almost horizontally left, Rice looked for an opening in the ferocious Reading defense. 'There it is' he whispered, 'glory awaits!'. Bursting through the hole like the sharpest of straws in a Capri-sun, the crowd let out a shrill cry. But wait, 2 more beasts from the depths of hell stood in his way! Unsheathing his right arm like King Arthur's mighty Excalibur, he cut away the entangling thorn like arms of his opponents and continued towards stardom. With only the defensive might of Reading's loose head in his path, an almost agonisingly impressive side step made sure his name would not be forgotten. The sounds of joy and happiness from the crowd was all Rice was after that day but he duly accepted the additional 5 points which Greenstreet easily converted. 45-12 to Chiltern and victory sewn up.
The game was finished by a well worked try down the left wing which somehow found its way to Ollie Lansdowne to out pace the Reading outside centre for a score in the corner. 50-12 the final score and a happy start to 2017 for the loyal supporters.
Chiltern are 7 points behind league leaders Chinnor and play the return fixture at Weedon Lane on the 21st January. A bonus point win would surely make for a tense title race!