Chichester Praetorian Guard 34 v 0 Royal Navy U23
On Wednesday, 10th of October Chichester RFC hosted the Royal Navy U23 team under the floodlights at Oaklands Park.
Chichester Praetorian Guard v Royal Navy U23
On Wednesday evening Chichester RFC hosted the Royal Navy U23 team. With strong links now forming between the senior service and CRFC this was the ideal opportunity to further strengthen those links. Head Coach Scott Ashley is heavily involved with Navy rugby and RN U23 manager is current Colts’ Head Coach Pony Moore. Director of Rugby Paul Colley, also Head of Marketing at the Royal Navy, pulled together a select side. With the University playing on Wednesday afternoon and many, good home grown U23s away at university Chichester could not make its team exclusively U23, although of the 23 man squad over 80% were.
A couple of late withdrawals disrupted things a little with Kick off being put back to 19:15. The opening conditions were to prove challenging with swirling wind and rain.
The Royal Navy coming off the back of a 20 - 20 draw against Cambridge University’s 2nd team the previous week came out of the blocks hard and only strong defence held them at bay with the Navy side camped in the Chichester 22. The tackling from the home side was fierce with 17 year old Tyrese Makasi defying his age with some tremendous chop tackles. Once a knock on was made the Royal Navy were in trouble with Joe Woods and Kyran Richter, both of similar age to their opponents, giving the Navy a torrid time. The dominance at scrum time relieved the pressure and although Chichester seemed to be getting penalised relentlessly their dominance in the tight kept the Royal Navy at bay. The conditions were certainly not suiting running play but when they got front foot ball the Chichester backs moved the ball well with Henry Anscombe, at fly half, in superb form and Jamie Wilcock and Tom Hutchin hitting some great lines. In an error strewn first half the scores were remarkably on both wings. Firstly, Alex Margarson scorching down the right flank to score and then Ben Heber finishing a wonderful move wide left. Both lads only 18 and showing what promise Chichester have in the backs. Half time 10 - 0.
The Royal Navy held back for some time at half time and came out visibly more aggressive. Things became hotly contested at the break down but slowly the home side got on top. With the lineout functioning really well and the scrum in control Richter and O`Callaghan carried hard constantly getting over the gain line. The tight driving play was rewarded by 2 tries with O`Callaghan hitting a great support line to score wide and then a beautifully controlled lineout drive for Thompson to score. 20 - 0 . The Navy had their moments but on their odd break out the cover closed in quickly. Twice Anscombe hurtled back to cut down a dangerous break. As the game broke up the Praetorian Guard really started to click with excellent backs scores. Anscombe led the side superbly and showed his pace to ghost over, Hutchin another excellent young talent timed his run to perfection and slotted the extras. The best try was probably the last with young 17 year old scrum half Josh Goodwin linking the play brilliantly and with quite remarkable handling he rounded off the move. Final score 34 - 0.
The final score doesn’t reflect the Royal Navy’s ability. They had some very good players and hopefully gained a lot from the evening. But on the night the Praetorian Guard side played the conditions and match situation extremely well. As a unit they were a cohesive team and played some really excellent rugby
Team: Kyran Richter, Dane Gingell, Joe Woods, Luke Kemish, Martin O`Callaghan, Simon Pinhorne, Tyrese Makasi, Callum Lee, Harry Seaman, Henry Anscombe (Capt.), Toby Golds, Jamie Wilcock, Tom Hutchin, Alex Margarson and Ben Heber. Replacements: Tom Belcher, Jack Rugman, Lee Thompson, Charlie Wallace, Josh Goodwin, Jack Knight, Cameron Hopkins, and Nat Jackson.
Man of the Match, sponsored by Nuffield Health - some very strong performances with Joe Woods in the forwards immense and Henry Anscombe outstanding, but for such a young player Tyrese Makasi was exceptional. Man of the Match - Tyrese Makasi