Amersham & Chiltern battle to win a bonus point against Exmouth rugby team
By BMeiring | Tuesday, December 20, 2011, 19:55
Having travelled nearly 200 miles and with a weakened team, particularly in the front row, it wasn't surprising that Amersham & Chiltern struggled to get going against a very good Exmouth side.
Amersham & Chiltern XV team lose to Exmouth away on Saturday 10th December.
Chiltern started well and were taking the game to Exmouth when after 7 minutes an interception by the Exmouth fly half (3 metres offside) saw him score under the posts.
It clearly rattled Chiltern who conceded another 4 tries with sloppy tackling against strong, hard running Exmouth players.
A 31 – 0 half time scoreline made for very uncomfortable reading especially as Chiltern had lost prop Rhys Cadogan to injury after 25 minutes.
Clearly the half time team talk had a major effect however as Chiltern came out all guns blazing. After only 5 minutes a lovely pass from Ross Bugden put another replacement Sam Portland into a little bit of space.
He drove through 3 tackles before scoring wide out. Although the conversion was missed it galvanised Chiltern and troubled Exmouth.
The home side now found themselves under pressure to such an extent that repeated infringements at the breakdown saw them lose a player to the sin bin.
However, at this point Chiltern lost another prop and the game had to go to uncontested scrums. This saw a league debut for 18 year old Ollie Cato, a young player with huge promise.
Pressure told and a strong run saw Dwayne Polataivao cross near the posts, converted by Bugden. From the restart, again Chiltern drove upfield and after a sweeping move was halted near the line, a pick up and drive saw James Hogan cross for an unconverted try.
Play was now intense with both sides making it a real contest but Exmouth finally broke out of defence and scored an excellent long range try to seal the win.
Chiltern still weren't finished and came back to score a great try through Rob Smalley well converted from the touchline by Ross Bugden to secure a valuable bonus point.
A strange game, certainly a tale of two halves but ultimately Exmouth were just too far ahead for Chiltern's stirring comeback.