Six-try delight secures double over Chew Valley for Keynsham Rugby

Published on: 07 Mar 2016

March 2016

by Rob Breckon

Second-placed Keynsham Rugby produced an impressive six-try display to secure a significant bonus point victory away at third-placed Chew Valley. Full time score 12-36.

The first half, on Saturday, March 5, was arguably one of Keynsham’s best halves of attacking rugby of the season so far, the visitors flying out the blocks and notching up a 0-31 half-time score in front of a shell-shocked Chew Valley side and their supporters.

On one of the narrowest pitches in the league, the visitors demonstrated an effective variety of direct running rugby coupled with slick hands and execution in the backs.

Flanker Callum Fennel was the first to cross the whitewash, diving over after a period of quick passages of play. Captain and number 8 Jack Weston soon added the second try following a signature Keynsham forward play – a six-man catch and drive with the pack rumbling over and Weston dotting down.

The backs soon showed their own ability to pick apart a well-organised Chew Valley defence with slick hands and some great running lines allowing fullback Sam Challenger to hook onto the end of a flowing move and slide over in the corner.

Two more tries secured the bonus point inside the first half with flanker Hayden Johnson making it a full house for the back row, scoring courtesy of a good break from winger Adam Tesdale, who found the supporting hooker Paul Coops, who in turn released Johnson to run in under the posts. Weston notched up his brace following another power performance upfront with an unstoppable pushover scrum.

Half time score 0-31.

After some harsh words at half time it was the home side who clawed back a try with a penalty try awarded soon after the restart.

However, any hopes of a shift in momentum were soon squashed with the ever lively Fennel breaking from the line out to set up Keynsham’s sixth try of the game. Having broken from a line out just inside the Chew Valley half, Keynsham’s scrum half John Pearce ensured his side’s pace of attack remained high, and after five more phases, Chew’s defence was at sixes and sevens allowing Weston to notch up another try and his second hat trick against Chew Valley this season.

With the hill and wind in Chew’s favour, the home side enjoyed a greater share of possession in the second half. Despite a number of strong carries, Keynsham’s defence stood strong with a quick line speed and aggressive tackling nullifying Chew Valley’s usually potent back line.

However, the home side did have the final say with a try on the final whistle, albeit a scant consolation in what had been a dominant performance from a Keynsham side high in confidence and momentum.

Captain Weston said: “It was a fantastic performance from the boys. We flew out the blocks and were relentless in the first half. Second half we did what was needed and we played the game in the right areas.

“To do the double over Chew is great as they are always tough games and it has now opened up a healthy gap between us and third.

“Stroud at home next week will be another stern test but the lads are absolutely buzzing at the moment.”

Full time score 12-36.

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