Chipstead (12) vs OGRFC (15)
OGRFC move off the bottom of the table
OGRFC arrived at Chipstead for the first time and discovered one of the hilliest pitches in Surrey. While OGRFC were on the foot of Surrey 1, Chipstead were only a few places above meaning this was going to be a very tight game with a lot riding on the result. Thankfully OGRFC scored in the opening moments of the game, with Jack Chard getting his first try of the season. It started from the first scrum of the game, just outside the Chipstead 22 when Will Percival picked from the base of the scrum and went on a marauding run, swatting off the defenders like they weren't there before offloading to Jack Chard to bag the 5 points.
The game then started to unfold as expected, very cagey and tight, with the ball being played around the fringes. OGRFC then got the next score thanks to a penalty from Toby Marshall, taking the lead to 8 nil. Unfortunately, the defensive task got tougher towards the end of the first half when Ben Wheeler was sent to the sin bin for 10 minutes; Mr Dependable was on hand in the form of Mike Tierney to move into the front row for this period and did not look out of position in the slightest. The sin bin seemed to motivate OGRFC even more who did not give an inch in defence and went into half time with the 8 nil lead.
The second half started similarly to the first half in that OGRFC managed to score a try early on, and it was a beautiful one. On the half way line, the backs set up to kick, however Toby Marshall saw the space outside and expertly sent the ball through the hands. Chris Hanson got on the ball and then looped round with the supporting line to find the space, Chris Hanson was then one on one with the fullback and put a lovely chip over his head when Toby Marshall was then on hand to pick up the ball and score under the posts, 15 nil to OGRFC. This was a promising start to the second half given that in recent weeks, OGRFC have let their games get away from them in the early parts of the second half.
Given Chipstead were playing with the hill in the second half, OGRFC knew the game was far from over. Chipstead kept knocking on the door, however OGRFC refused to let them in, helped in no small part by Ben Morrison who was throwing men out the way that were double the size of him. The second row pairing of Ali Stanley and Will Stride performed out of their skin, disrupting the line out and carrying and defending very well. With 5 minutes still to play, Chipstead managed to get their first score of the day taking the score to 15-5. OGRFC were desperate to not let Chipstead to get any points from the game as it could be crucial later on in the season. Unfortunately the referee's card was shown again in the last few minutes when Jack Walters was shown an "Orange" card. Rather frustratingly, Chipstead scored with the last play of the game to secure their losing bonus point, however this was not enough to dampen OGRFC's winning celebrations.
This game marked the half way point in the season and has given OGRFC high hopes moving into the second half of the season when they return to the College next Saturday against Old Freemans.