Reeds Make it 4 wins from 5 Games
REEDS WEYBRIDGE 33 CHICHESTER 27
For the second time in less than a month, Reeds, six points in front, with the clock on red, were locked into repelling a series of rucks and mauls on their own line, knowing that a converted try would give the visitors the game. The pressure on Reeds was even greater this time as the heavyweight Chichester pack rolled ever closer to the line, but Reeds have some serious physicality in defence that frustrated the visitors, a hand was spotted in the ruck, Reeds were awarded the penalty and the ball was dispatched to the side-lines. Alex Corner, Reeds No 8 was one of the dominant figures throughout, but especially in those final exchanges, he was in the middle of everything and that awesome all-round display earned him the Man of the Match award. Chichester will be celebrating their Centenary in four years’ time, but this is the first time the teams have met. Reeds, lost the toss and were down the slope in the first half, they had the best of the territory enabling Peter Cole the fly half to bang over a siege gun penalty shot, no doubt about the try of the day, young Ethan Taylor, the utility back collected the ball deep in his own half, he is born to attack from the most unpromising situations, he set off, hoisted the ball over the cover defence, it bobbled on the touchline and agonisingly for the defence bounced a metre short of the try line, the full back knocked on, and Alex Corner following up was over the try line, another long distance shot from Pete Cole and Reeds were ten points to the good. This was nót for long though, as the visitors drove play up-field, a free kick on the 22 gave metres of space out wide and Jason Smith the flanker went over unopposed. The lineouts, by way of skipper Herbie Finn and Cameron Goodwin were providing plenty of good ball for Reeds, up front in the tight scrums Reeds also had the edge and lots of clean possession enabled them to take up residence in the Chichester 22. Quick hands put Pete Cole away on the blindside, nothing much looked on but his clever chip over the defence and Billy Maddock ran through the press defence to regather the ball and score in the corner. Yet another steepling conversion from Cole, way out wide and Reeds were into a ten-point lead at 17-7. Back again came Chichester with possession on the five-metre line, Joe Woods the big prop forward saw space and rumbled over for a seven pointer. Pete Cole kept his side ahead with 2 further long-distance penalties, but Just before the break, Reeds were on the march again, their back division attacked through the midfield, Chichester were offside under the sticks and Reeds collected a penalty try. What looked like another certain try following a lovely inside pass to Lewis Jones the strong mobile 7 who glided through a number of attempted tackles was chalked off by the referee for a hand-off to the face much to the confusion of the Reeds crowd.
At the change round Reeds had a sixteen-point lead at 14 – 30, however, Reeds ability to run the ball is embedded in their DNA, and on so many occasions it has unlocked a surprised defence, but inevitably, it sometimes comes to grief and it did shortly after the break. The safe option was to clear the lines with a touch finder, but the jinking run out of defence by Josh Clark was snared by the Chichester back row and from that penalty move Reeds conceded a try under the posts – nine points now the difference and the game had a different complexion especially with Reeds losing their scrum half Ollie Palmer to injury. Reeds back play was now far less fluid and penetrative but despite that, out wide young Marcus Clark was testing the defence with his elusive running and pace and was within 3 meters of scoring on 2 occasions only for the Chichester right winger to snare his man both times. On the other wing Joe Moriarty was bulldozing his way along the touchline always gaining ground before he was stopped. Reeds were so close to a decisive score but that Chichester defence was difficult to break down. A couple more penalties from Chichester and there was just three points between the two sides, and the momentum was with Chichester only for them to have their outside centre red carded for what appeared to be a no arms tackle that resulted in contact to the head. Shortly afterwards step forward Ethan Taylor, with Peter Cole nursing a leg injury, to despatch another long-range penalty to stretch that lead to six points. Those last two or three minutes were nail-biting for the team and for the packed touchline of Reeds support. Chichester were so near to grabbing a late score but Reeds defence, under the cosh, kept the line secure. Reeds conceded two yellows during the afternoon and discipline will be one of the focus items during the mid-week training sessions.
Meanwhile Reeds fielded 3 sides for the first time this season, with the 2nd & 3rd XV’s both winning to make it a clear sweep of results:
Reeds Weybridge 2nds 35 Chobham 2nds 22
Reeds Weybridge 3rds 24 Racal Decca 12
Reeds Weybridge have a break from league rugby next weekend, their next game is a home game against Guildford on October 15th.