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Home > News > Cheltenham 0 - Chippenham 15
Your News Cheltenham 0 - Chippenham 15

Chippenham moved a step closer to clinching the league title with a fifteen points to nil away victory over near neighbours, Cheltenham on Saturday.

The match was played in horrendous conditions driving rain and a strong, swirling wind/gale and on a pitch moved suited to ploughing than rugby. But the conditions were the same for both teams and the winner was always going to be the team that coped the best.

Watching coach, Rob Alford was well satisfied with the final result. He said; The playing conditions were horrendous although we played with the elements for the first half. Everyone stood up to the challenge today.

Chippenham were forced into making three changes in the pack. Andy Wood came in at loose-head prop and the game saw the welcome return of Nick Doyle, who has been out for some time through injury and Ian Jones came in for his first game of the season. Alford said; This was never going to be a game where kicking was going to be a key element. The wind made it impossible to kick from anywhere.

After a fairly even first fourteen minutes, the visitors took the lead with a try from their second row Ade Price. A catch and drive lineout saw Price gather the ball and cross the line for the opening points. The conversion attempt was missed.

There was no further score from either side until just before the half-time whistle.

Another lineout for Chippenham saw the ball worked through several phases of play with the final pass going to scrum-half, Tom Collins who dived over for Chippenhams second try. Full-back Karl Brant added the conversion and from the restart, Cheltenham were penalised for a scrum infringement.

Brant was on target again with a fine penalty kick and Chippenham went into the half-time break with a comfortable 0-15 lead.

The second half saw Cheltenham playing with the wind and they had the opportunity of reducing the deficit early on. But the penalty kick drifted wide of the posts.

But Chippenhams tactics paid off. They switched to a tight, driving game to prevent Cheltenham from scoring. The tactic worked and as the weather deteroriated so did the game and the half was barren of points from either side.

For Chippenham, the points bring them ever closer to the league title. Alford said after the game; The difference between us was the forwards. The general work-rate from our forwards was awesome. Their performance this afternoon was the best performance I have seen from a Chippenham pack for four or five years. And I dont say that lightly.

This win means that Chippenham are just one point away from the league title. They have two more fixtures left neither of them easy. On the 12th April, they play Swanage & Wareham at home and on the 19th, face Marlow away.

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