Amersham & Chiltern 19 | 10 Colchester 1st XV
Despite scoring more tries, Colchester's poor discipline denies them the win
Colchester travelled to Buckinghamshire to take on Chiltern who, like the Blacks, were relegated from National 3 last year. In the absence of prop James Mitchell and hooker Rhys Hartley, Joe Reid and Charlie Thorogood joined the front row and James Parry made his debut on the right wing.
Conditions were calm but cold with a soggy pitch. The Men-of-the Match turned out to be the two scrum halves with Chiltern’s No 9 converting all five of his goal attempts and Colchester’s Matt Wadling getting the visitor’s first try.
Chiltern kicked off and within ten minutes gained a penalty which was converted soon to be added to by another bringing the score to 6-0. The hosts weren’t having it all their way though and Colchester backs launched several attacks, one from centre Joe Flexman who ran 30 metres and almost made it to the try line before being tackled.
Soon Chiltern attacked down the left and, following a lineout, one of their locks powered over for a converted try putting them 13 points ahead at the interval. Lee Soper, Colchester’s coach, brought prop Jerone Awesu and lock Joe Colcomb off the bench for Reid and Elliott Castle.
The Blacks raised their game in the second half and were soon pressing towards Chiltern’s line. Flanker Rob Pickard claimed a try in the corner but it was disallowed by the referee but Wadling made things good when, soon after, he slipped under the defence to score a great opportunistic try. James Crozier’s conversion attempt unluckily hit the bar so the score was now 13-5.
As the game restarted Colchester’s fly half Brett Cutbush was injured and was replaced from the bench by Jack White. Later Colchester gave away a penalty that was converted taking the score to 16-5. Annoyed with themselves they attacked the Chiltern end and from a successful scrum White cleverly cross-kicked to Crozier who darted over for an unconverted try.
There was disappointment for the Blacks when they gave away yet another penalty despite the protestations of their skipper Liam Pickett at his players. The penalty was successful putting Chiltern further ahead at 19-10.
Despite a huge effort in the dying moments of the game when they were camped for a long time on Chiltern’s line, Colchester could not add any more points and Chiltern claimed a victory which enabled them to swap places with Colchester from 4th to 3rd place in the league.