Gallery: Welwyn improve but still lose
PUBLISHED: 17:10 11 March 2008 | UPDATED: 21:44 26 October 2009
London League Two North Welwyn 13 Chingford 24 DESPITE a massively improved performance compared with last week, Welwyn went down at home to a resurgent Chingford side. With the league season entering its final stages, both clubs had plenty to play for;
London League Two North
Welwyn 13 Chingford 24
DESPITE a massively improved performance compared with last week, Welwyn went down at home to a resurgent Chingford side.
With the league season entering its final stages, both clubs had plenty to play for; Chingford being on the fringe of promotion and Welwyn seeking to avoid relegation.
The home side introduced 18-year-old Josh Libberton at loose head prop, otherwise the team was unchanged from last week's very disappointing performance against Eton Manor.
Chingford were first to attack on Saturday. They kicked for position and from the ensuing lineout they drove the ball up to the Welwyn line before moving it out wide.
Good tackling by Peter Elliott and James Merivale kept them out.
Jon Child at full back also found several long touch kicks to relieve the pressure.
However, Welwyn were being stretched and conceded a penalty 35 metres out. The kick was successful and Chingford deservedly took the lead.
Welwyn now settled down, adjusting themselves to the pace of the game.
Mark Harris and Rob Picken were prominent in the loose, making yards of ground which enabled the forward pack to move the ball through a number of phases.
Winger Luke Williams almost scored after following up a kick by Gareth Hughes.
Chingford looked well coordinated in their backs and the hosts were penalised again in keeping them out and the lead was increased to six points.
When prop Grant Keeler was yellow carded for a technical infringement, the game seemed to be slipping away but it was Welwyn who scored next.
Scrum-half Tom Winter made a break before handing on to Rob James. Chingford were penalised in their efforts to repel the attack and Hughes kicked the points.
Soon after though, Chingford increased their lead with a try scored in the corner following a fluid passing move.
The conversion failed and the game began to swing from end to end.
Welwyn reduced the deficit to 11-6 when Hughes kicked a difficult penalty and went in at the interval buoyed by the close scoreline.
The confidence of the home side showed after the break and they were soon rewarded.
Winter moved the ball to Hughes, who timed his pass to perfection in sending Merivale in for a try under the posts.
Hughes kicked the conversion and Welwyn were now 13-11 ahead.
This seemed to spur on the visitors, who soon regained the lead with a penalty from 30 metres after concerted pressure.
Welwyn refused to give up, with Jacques Naude and Peter Elliott particularly impressive.
But their efforts were not to be rewarded and the home side fell further behind.
They were penalised for not releasing the ball in a ruck and the penalty attempt was successful to increase Chingford's advantage to 17-13.
The Essex side clinched the victory late on with a converted try after good approach work by the forwards.
Welwyn lost 67-8 in the away game to Chingford last September, so they can take something out of what was confident performance on Saturday.
They have three games remaining to secure their place in London League Two North, and will most likely need to win at least two of them to stand a chance.
Their next fixture is away to Thurrock on Saturday, March 29.
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