3XV win pre-season derby
By Doug Smith
Physical game under floodlights with both teams playing some good Rugby
Chiltern 3XV met Chesham 2XV for a pre-season friendly 2 weeks before the start of the Merit League season. Chesham always present a tough battle up front and Chiltern weren't disappointed. Chesham took advantage of clean early possession to score in the corner using their pace well outside. Conceding first and early is a bit of a habit for the 3XV even in games that they go on to win easily but this still marked a wake up call. Chiltern started to put some moves together and the off loads starting going to hand before Oli Anderson went over for an equaliser after 30 minutes. The loose battle was very attritional and the scores were locked at 5-5 until 5 minutes before the break when Phil John
slotted an under the posts penalty to take an 8-5 lead into half time.
Wholesale changes to the 3s lineup were made at half time which can sometimes be disruptive to the flow of the game, but a mix of youth and experience was maintained and the 2nd half team were challenged with not losing the lead ! It was a memorable game for father and son Mark Welch
and Joshua Crawley-Welch
who played second row together for the first time.
Chiltern kept up the same tempo and game plan in the second half and the fresher legs were an advantage. After a period of pressure in Chesham's 22 debutant Iwan Thomas
gathered the ball from a tackled arjan gill
,who had made a mazey run from the half way line, and went over for the try. Phil John
converted. There were some great runs from broken play as Chiltern's tails were up and with the young 3s back line , marshalled by second half captain Stef Treloar, running freely. The forwards were winning their share of the ball and Pete Porter
led the pack in the second half making some powerful runs, it felt like the 3xv were controlling the game. It finished with a Chiltern victory but Chesham put on a great performance.
Man of the match went to another debutant Ed Campos
stepping in at Hooker who threw some accurate lineout ball and was busy in the loose.
Chiltern wish Chesham success this season and look forward to visiting the Stags for a return match later this season and check out the new club house.
Match Photo: Cookie