Saturday saw Old Reigatian hosted Chichester RFC a new fixture and following a comfortable victory over Battersea Ironsides last week this was obviously going to be a big ask for the Home team. With injury blows two of the ORs back line missing with Gareth Stephens back injury and Harrison Mitchell neck, this gave an opportunity for Ben Holder to reclaim his place in the starting lineup and a debut for Winger Dom Smith, another 1st start was for 17 year old Jonny Long son of Ex 1st XV Captain Tyrone who impressed from the bench last week to earn a place in the starting XV this week.
Reigatian’s started well with the strong running forwards led by Captain Reilly Franklin-Talbot getting the team over the gain line with the visitors under pressure they gave away a couple of penalties the second one in kickable range and Lucas Overtoom convert this to take a 3-0 lead.
Then with 15 minutes on the clock a Line Out close to the Chichester line was caught and driven with Lock Joe Gregson crashing over from close range to claim the first try of the afternoon. 8-0
With the first quarter approaching Chichester had working their way into ORs half and started to apply some pressure. Tom Woodford’s clearance kick charged down the Home team had a Line Out in their own 22. A shorten lineout won by Long was driven up in midfield by Talbot giving a ruck in the middle of the park. Chichester’s first defender fell from Alex Skinner’s dummy and Skinner was away racing up field who found Overtoom in support who in turn passed on to Dan Jones and quickly play was in the other 22 and Reigatian looking to have the upper hand again.
The visitors managed to clear their lines to just outside their half where a sloppy slap back to their 9 who couldn’t gather as a forward collected the ball he was hit by Jack Baart and the ball went loose again and Skinner showed great footballing skills to chip ahead on the volley and manage to catch it on the full and out sprint the defence to score under the posts which Overtoom converted giving Old Reigatian a healthy 15-0 lead at half time.
Early in the second half Max Coyle took an interception on the half way and run in under the posts unchallenged 22-0. Chichester were never going to lay down and not come back at ORs and in the 68th minute claimed their first points of the afternoon with a try in the corner 22-5.
No further score in the next ten minutes and then ORs found themselves camped on the opposition try line with the forwards trying to batter they way across. Chichester defended bravely but eventually the ball was moved wide to Dom Smith out wide on the right wing who scored in the corner. Well deserved on his debut.27-5 and a try scoring bonus point. With the clock ticking Chichester kept fighting and managed to cross the line for two tries in the last 15 minutes to close the score to 27-17. But rightly it was ORs who had the last say with a scrum midfield the ball was moved right and with the defence rushing to get wide Max Coyle found half a gap to break the gain line and score the final try of the afternoon. A great performance to claim the first win at level 6. Next week the 1st XV travel to Reeds to renew their rivalries after a draw in Weybridge and a 42-21 victory to ORs at Park Lane it should be a great game.
1.Paul Marshall, 2. Ciaran Nestor, 3. Reilly Franklin-Talbot, 4. Dan Jones, 5. Joe Gregson, 6. Jonny Long, 7. Oli Brooks 8. Jack Baart, 9. Alex Skinner, 10. Lucas Overtoom, 11. Finn Coyle, 12. Ben Holder, 13. Max Coyle, 14. Dom Smith, 15. Tom Woodford, 16.Toby Collister, 17. Seb Courtney-Walker, 18. Patrick White