Chinnor U16s secure solid win against Abingdon
By Alex Bond
Chinnor worked hard to see off Abingdon with a convincing display of rugby
The morning starting ominously with squally rain and the sight of some big Abingdon players. Undeterred, Chinnor started well and did not look back. Even the sun came out in the second half! With a total of 28 players on the paddock, there were some loans and several Chinnor players played out of position. Both teams dropped one wing and this left extra space which Chinnor capitalised on.
Joe H opened the scoring after 4 minutes seemingly tackled a metre shy of the tryline, only to be picked up and driven over by Ben M. This followed a good opening passage of play where the ball passed through the hands of most of the team.
Sam G marked his debut at hooker, winning our own scrums and one of Abingdon's. He also threw in well. Ed M and Ben N were strong in the front row and made some excellent carries, always managing to recycle the ball.
Try #2 came only a few minutes later when Finn S turned the ball over and started on a one-man trundle. As the opposition looked like the were eventually going to stop him, he offloaded to release Alex B to run half the pitch down the pitch to score.
Josh E played at centre and repeatedly carried well. The highlight of this was when, fresh back to the field after stemming a bloody nose, he carried twenty metres to get out of Chinnor's 22, taking three Abingdon players to stop him. He also converted three tries in the first half.
Try #3 was a delightful backs try where Will F (on the wing) ran a line towards the posts only for a good cover tackle to stop him. As he was going to ground, he popped the ball into Eddie C's hands who ran the last 20 yards to cross the whitewash.
Dan M played out of position at flanker and showed good spirit, making tackles in defence and making yards and securing the ball in attack.
Try #4 was an example of how to play fast attacking running rugby. The forwards had done their job securing the ball and Max B at scrum half spun the ball out to Chris B at #10, who timed it well to get it into Alex B's hands. Alex B then sold the biggest dummy to throw the defender off and then run in to score in the corner.
Rich B had a good game at lock. Though not one of the scorers, he successfully won all line outs thrown to him and snatched the first opposition line out ball too!
Try #5 was scored by Ben M from the back of a breakdown just meters off the Abingdon try line. It followed a more even passage of play, with possession alternating between visitors and hosts.
Abingdon did respond in the first half with a well worked try, scored by their #13 who saw a gap and exploited it. 7-31 going into the break.
The second half started a little more slowly, with Abingdon securing a penalty for hands in the ruck. They kicked well and Chinnor had to defend to stop the hosts from opening the scoring. They did this, turning the ball over and working their way out of the danger zone.
Try #6 came from a great run by Alex B (now on his hat-trick). Try #7 was scored by Will F who managed to hand off numerous defenders to get on the scoreboard. Both Alex B and Will F's ability to slip tackles makes them a force to be reckoned with.
Chinnor were then penalised, perhaps controversially, for unsportsmanlike play. Having made very short work of the defence one player then waited (without scoring) to give the ball to his teammate so he could take the glory. Anyway, the try was disallowed and both players given some downtime.
Abingdon used this period well, firstly kicking through, knowing they had the numbers to compete and also shipping the ball out to their centres and winger. This pressure was resisted for the main part until the Abingdon #10 chipped the ball through and ran on to secure their only try of the half.
Back up to numbers, try #8 was scored by Toby C, who played well throughout, including a stint at the Abingdon #8. Try #9 was scored by Butler who showed his searing pace yet again. Joe H successfully converted all the second half tries.
Thanks go to Toby C, Ben M and Chris B who all donned an Abingdon shirt for periods of the match. They did so willingly and played well for Abingdon, helping in defence and often instrumental in attack.
Mentions also go to Toby C, Joe H, Chris B and Dan M all of whom played out of position at flanker for some or all of the match.
Abingdon were very good hosts and kept playing until the final whistle.
Final score 12-59.