CANTERBURY 0 CHINNOR 7
A losing bonus point lifted Canterbury off the bottom of the National One table but it was Chinnor’s adroit handling of Storm Dennis that earned them a seventh consecutive victory. For the city side this was another disappointment after a massive first half defensive effort limited the visitors to the game’s only score.
With the gale and rain at their backs after the break the odds favoured Canterbury but they were frustrated by a top class display of ball control from the visitors pack.
They starved the city club of possession, going through countless phases and denying them the kind of attacking territory they enjoyed themselves in the first 40 minutes.
What Canterbury achieved in that first half was heroic and deserved to be better rewarded. They were battered by the heavier Chinnor forwards but what they lacked in poundage they made up in determination and bravery. They survived a barrage of penalties, a yellow card for prop Ellior Lusher and got themselves out of tight corners through sheer hard work.
Chinnor pounded away but could only come up with an eighth minute try for lock Ehize Ehizodi converted by Laurie May.
On a day when every point counted the visitors twice ignored easy penalty chances in their pursuit of tries, but got nothing from a bodies-on-the line defence.
Those decisions might have proved costly but when Canterbury got their turn to use the storm they made nothing of it. They ploughed away up front, did not trust any sort of kicking game and Chinnor’s disciplined skills allowed them to play much of their rugby in the home half. Only late in the day did the city side pose a scoring threat when penalty awards gave them attacking lineouts. That had been a strong area all afternoon with Matt Corker supreme, but in those final minutes Chinnor twice poached the throw and claimed the points in what had been a huge test of stamina in extreme conditions.
Canterbury: D. Corcoran, R.Mackintosh, F.Morgan, A.Meads (repl W.Waddington), C.Grimes, C.Kingsman, T.Williams (repl D.Smart), E.Lusher (repl B.Young), T.King, S.North (repl A.Wake-Smith), J.Rouse, M.Corker, S.Rogers, F.Edwards (repl R.Cadman), S.Stapleto