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Home > News > Chesham 15 - Abingdon 14
Your News Chesham 15 - Abingdon 14

Chesham Rugby Club secured a nail biting home victory over Abingdon on Saturday. A converted try in the final act of the match saw Chesham snatch a one point victory from a dangerous visiting side, and triggered rapturous celebrations amongst a large supporting crowd. Abingdon had looked the stronger team throughout the afternoon, but the Stags showed fantastic heart to fight back and take the win.

Abingdon kicked off into a heavy head wind and immediately found themselves under pressure from a strong Chesham attack. With captain Gareth Wehrle out injured, Nick Deans took the helm and set the tone with some strong carries into the heard of the Abingdon defence. Despite their efforts the home side weren’t able to break through and Abingdon were able to clear their lines. The visitors also looked dangerous in attack with some strong runners, but the Stags defence line was able to cut their opposite men down, with first team debutant Zain Sibilant in particular making some physical hits.

With both sides feeling each other out the first points went to Chesham, fly-half Ross Leek was able to use the wind to his advantage and landed a long range penalty to show his opposite man how it’s done. With the Stags now in the lead they seemed to switch off and the visitors were able to hit back. With their scrum dominating Abingdon were able to release their big centre to burst through some poor tackling and score the opening try, which was then converted.

Chesham had suffered from a slow start and went back to basics with some straight running and hard graft at the breakdown. This was rewarded as a turnover saw the backs in space; a fantastic line from Man of the Match Tom Hirst took him through the defence. The inside centre then found Olly Jaycocks on his shoulder for the full back to score his seventh try in as many games, but Leek was unable to convert in the tricky conditions.

The home side went in 8-7 up at half time and were looking to build on the score in the second half. Unfortunately it was Abingdon who struck first with a breakaway try to put them 14-8 in the lead. Chesham then spent the next twenty minutes defending as Abingdon looked to capitalize on their lead. With the wind now at their backs the visitors were attempting to pin the Stags in their own half, but good work from the back three of Matt Coles and the Jaycocks twins, Olly and Alex, ran the ball back with interest.

Chesham’s set piece was now starting to function well and they were able to crank up the pressure on the Abingdon defence. The Stags were fighting hard for the win and their attacks took them to the Abingdon line where some cynical killing of the ball resulted in a sin binning for their prop. With Chesham continuing to attack the visitor’s defence was working hard and some big hits were stopping the home side’s attacks at source. However, one such tackle was deemed to be a tip by the referee and Abingdon found themselves down to thirteen men.

Chesham now sensed an upset and kicked for the corner, trusting their lineout that had been function well all afternoon. Hooker Warren Gilmore found his man and the Stags drove for the line, coming up only inches short. Gilmore then picked up at the back of the ruck and, spotting the defence out of position, drove through a gap to score. With the conversion now being the difference between winning and losing, Leek stepped up and coolly slotted the kick to give Chesham the win.

“We started slowly and let Abingdon play their rugby, but their first try seemed to give the spark we needed to get back into our flow” said Wehrle. “The backs hands were crisp and the forwards did well to tighten up our set piece. The way the lads stuck at it is a testament to Chesham rugby with three sets of brothers playing a key role in the game. To come away winning was phenomenal; blood, sweat, and the coaches tears were left on the pitch and I’m unbelievably proud of the lads.”

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