RUGBY: Convincing win over Chinnor lifts Worthing

WORTHING RAIDERS Rugby Club took a huge leap towards National 3 South safety on Saturday with a convincing 47-13 victory over fellow strugglers Chinnor.

Raiders' impressive win gave them five points, and sent them up to fourth from bottom, four points clear of the relegation zone.

After the disappointment of winning against Henley last weekend but still dropping to the bottom, Worthing took their battling performance into this weekend.

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Director of rugby Ian Davies was extremely pleased with the result and performance from his team. He said: "We played really well. It wasn't all-out attack. We were made to defend for large periods, which made it an all-round performance, which was comprehensive and important.

"It was great to see the players smiling and enjoying their rugby and it's very pleasing to see ourselves move up the table.

"During the first 20 minutes on Saturday, both teams were very nervous, which showed in the play. We withstood the pressure and took a very important lead.

"It was a disastrous start to the second half but we corrected it and took control in the last 20 minutes where our fitness really showed.

"We also spoke of the importance of not only winning but not letting Chinnor pick up any bonus points, so for us to take five points was fantastic.

"We now have 11 league games left and, although we are still in a fight to survive, the morale and belief is up.

"Apart from London Scottish, who really are on a different level, we believe we can beat anyone in the league.

"We have a very strong squad, with competition for places, as people coming in are doing fine jobs for us.

"The Havant game is still a must-win but I'm looking forward to giving teams we played and lost to earlier in the season, like Bridgwater, Richmond and Barking, a run for their money.

"I was very impressed with Ben Dudley, he was fantastic and really makes us tick. It comes as no surprise we've started picking up points now he is back. Jamie Redmayne performed well as well, having him back from injury really adds things for us."

Worthing's match against Bridgwater and Albion on Saturday has been postponed owing to Bridgwater's EDF Trophy match.

Davies said: "It would be nice to keep things going from the run we are on. But then again we picked up a few bumps and bruises this weekend so it will give us a chance to rest up."

Early pressure from Worthing led to a penalty shot at goal for winger Ben Coulson which he put away with little difficulty, reports Mike Rice.

They produced some good attacking moves which several times broke down in the cold wind, against a side that were very quick into the tackle.

Furthermore, Chinnor managed to keep Worthing on the back foot with some probing kicking, and it was the home side that were committing offences in loose scrums.

While much of the first part of the game was played in Worthing territory, it was a fast break from here that set Callum Wilson up for a try converted by Coulson.

Chinnor, too, were dangerous on the break, especially when gifted possession by Worthing backs in midfield.

They caught their hosts napping at the start of the second half with a try in the corner to bring the score to 10-8. Stung by this, Raiders stepped up a gear with scrum-half Joe Govett making ground, and starting a spell of fine Raiders' pressure, which was matched by sturdy Chinnor defending.

However, when Worthing burst from their own line, Will Harris was able to score in the corner.

Perhaps too eager to take quick tap penalties, the hosts were frequently called back by the referee, but one such instance enabled Matt McLean, changing to a place kick, to add three points.

McLean had taken over kicking duties after Coulson suffered a dead leg.

The only other Chinnor score came from a moment of carelessness by the Raiders, who dropped the ball in the midfield which allowed Chinnor fly-half Ben Hewitt to run home unopposed.

But Worthing's pressure was now telling and a still-limping Coulson managed to add a try, and so too did Dudley, Charlie McGowan and McLean in the final 20 minutes.

WORTHING: Marshall, Coulson, Harris, Wilson, McLean, Dudley, Govett, Storer, Pointing, Bennett, Arthur, McGowan, Levett, Redmayne, Maidment. Subs: Blumberg (Storer 40), Lawski (Arthur 60), Emmett (Govett 70), Sargeant, Rogers.


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