Cheshire kicked off with the wind at their backs. C.N.D. receiving immediately experienced the pressure from Cheshire who pressed deep into C.N.D’s territory before giving a penalty at which point gave C.N.D the opportunities to go for position and they took their chance of putting Cheshire back into their own half. It was evident from their first lineout that they were well practiced and displayed their ability and strength with a texted book driving maul.
Mistakes from both sides during the opening fifteen minutes meant that the penalty count was adding up. Cheshire gained possession and settled into the game and sustained controlled passages of play putting C.N.D under tremendous pressure. Alex Burrage, using the elements, put excellent long touch line kicks into the C.N.D’s 22 area which resulted in the first score of the day. From here Cheshire exerted the necessary pressure which gave Rory Canham the opportunity to penetrate the gaps to score the first try left of the posts with Alex Stewart converting. Cheshire’s momentum continued and Canham went in for two more tries with Stewart converting. 21-0 to Cheshire. However, complacency by Cheshire allowed C.N.D to bounce back to score 2 tries and conversions before half time, 21 -14.
The second half saw Cheshire make eight changes to their team. C.N.D. kicked off the second half and with renewed vigor applying pressure. C.N.D. won a lineout on the edge of Cheshire 22 metre line and with texted book precision created a drive maul which led to their third try, the conversion went wide of the posts, 21-19
Cheshire regrouped and also immediately after the restart Will Titherington intercepted a floating pass to increase the lead to 26-19. During the game C.N.D displayed strength and technique particularly from their front row, which was especially evident in the first half giving Cheshire lots of problems in controlling the own scrum ball. C.N.D was also very adept at the lineout and in particular creating driving mauls which Cheshire had difficulty controlling. During the second half Cheshire’s lineout improve and their confidence grew when Solomon Neil’s front of the line peel gave Cheshire a seven point advantage, 26-19
Cheshire were riding high and dominating the game when Josh Davies received a two on one pass from Ben Watson to increase the score to 31-19. C.N.D rallied and through their disciplined forward play brought the score to 31-26, but it was Cheshire who had the last say when Ben Watson went over to make the final score 36-26.
Cheshire’s all round performance was good but still have room for improvement as all the player will agree. Their continuity became stronger as the game went on.