Colchester 1st XV 42 | 19 Amersham & Chiltern
The Mill Road home supporters were treated to an exhilarating game as Colchester defeat Amersham & Chiltern in style
In dry and calm conditions ideal for their style of play, Colchester treated their home crowd to a brilliant victory by 6 tries to 3 over their rivals Chiltern who had beaten them 19-10 earlier in the season. Once again kicker James Crozier was in fine form converting all of the tries and scoring one for himself.
This result maintains the Blacks 100% home record and puts them level with Chiltern in third place but with a game in hand as the twice-postponed fixture against Fullerians will now be played on Good Friday at Mill Road at 3 pm.
Colchester fielded an unchanged pack and the backs included incomers Jack White and George Liversidge. When substitutes prop Alex Mitchell, scrum-half Brett Cutbush and debutant forward Tom Gallagher joined the fray later in the game they all performed well.
Chiltern got the game underway and within five minutes put their loosehead prop over for a converted try. Colchester quickly replied at the other end of the pitch when, following a successful scrum, scrum-half Matt Wadling kicked through the defence for flanker Ollie Pickett to touch down. With the score now at 7-7 there followed a period of intense play with both sides trying to get the upper hand. The Blacks started to dominate the set pieces with hooker and Man-of-the-Match Rhys Hartley throwing well and often to the fore in loose play.
From a dangerous looking attack by Chiltern, the ball was moved along their backs only for quick thinking Crozier to intercept the last pass and run the length of the field to score a great opportunist try. This score raised the whole team and for the rest of the half, Colchester were on the front foot. Fullback Will Brown, playing his last game for Colchester, and wing Damien Brambley caught the eye with their turn of speed and accurate kicking. Also, fly-half White was having a very composed game. Several times Chiltern’s centres tried to break through the defence but were well repelled by middlemen Jona Crisp and Liversidge who both put in strong tackles.
Just before halftime, the deadlock was broken when No 8 Harrison Pickett came off the back of a scrum, fed Brown who linked with Brambley who sprinted 50 metres to score putting the Blacks 21-7 ahead at the interval.
Early in the second half open side flanker Danny Whiteman soon scored the bonus point try after scooting through the defence before grounding the ball. Later he got his second when he grabbed a ball at the back of a lineout and sprinted 40 metres to score again.
Not giving up Chiltern then scored twice through their lock and their winger as the Blacks eased off the pressure bringing the score to 35-19 but the Blacks denied them any bonus points as Hartley scored the final try to conclude a magnificent Colchester performance in front of their jubilant supporters.