Beaconsfield began their first game of the year with high hopes, aiming to start their fightback in the Southern Counties league.
However, they were 10-0 down after 26 minutes. Following a free kick, Grove’s No 11 Paul Sheppard cut inside to score in the left-hand corner. Roger Scriva converted and 11 minutes later slotted over a penalty. Beaconsfield reduced the deficit before the break when Ben Manning charged down an attempted clearance and a charging Wayne Jackson went over for a try.
Becs equalised after 50 minutes following good interplay from the backs which enabled David Lewis to burst through in the left-hand corner, but eight minutes later they allowed Grove to get into a scoring position.
Unfortunate loose ball and more high kicking not gaining touch set up the visiting outside centre for a try which Roger Scriva converted with ease.
Grove maintained pressure before Beaconsfield fought back with more determination and forward Ed Middleton went over for 15-17.
In the dying minutes Becs had one more chance to score but Nick Tappin’s drop shot attempt at goal failed.
Beaconsfield: Kwong, Jackson, Carter, Callum, Chaney, Kavanagh, Howells, Manning, Wall, Haslett, Bondoc, Tappin, Crowe, Barnes, Wilson. Reps. Lewis, Middleton, Goulden.
Amersham & Chiltern 21
Chiltern kicked off the new year in Berks, Bucks & Oxon Premier with a victory after the long lay-off but certainly didn’t play their best rugby.
They did enough with tries through Tom LeMehaute, Wright and Will Reynolds and two penalties from Dan Kinsey but
for most of the game were their own worst enemy, conceding a total of 30 penalties, often when in good attacking position.
However, Chiltern’s defence was stout throughout, and another victory with no points conceded is an encouraging sign.
Discipline will need to improve if their winning run is to continue. The next match is away to Broadmoor Staff on Saturday, and Chiltern will need to be on top of their game.
n Amersham & Chiltern: Pettinger (Shanks), McHugh, Allen, Reynolds, C Bond, Rigby, Buller, Grammenos, Rastelli (L Gilhooly), R Smalley, Wright, Culverhouse, Neale, LeMehaute, Kinsey. Rep. Donnebaum.
Aylesbury Athletic 7
Stags were on a mission as they won their third league game in a row, avenging their one-point loss earlier in the season.
This was despite losing firstly winger Gavin Rees to a suspected broken ankle just before half-time (although x-rays later showed no break) to be replaced by a sick John O’Brien, and then being reduced to 14 men as scrum half Simon Halley was forced to retire injured.
From the start, solid groundwork in the forwards and unprecedented teamwork and handling in the backs soon produced a penalty, and a tap-and-go saw the offensive line surge forward and send Dom Gray over to take the lead.
Fly half Ross Leek was without his kicking tee this week and the difficult angle proved too much on this occasion.
Aylesbury hit back following a penalty awarded to them with a converted try just wide of the posts.
Chesham captain Dan Rose spurred on his team, and before Rees was injured they added two more tries (Don Marshall and Simon Halley) and two successful penalties.
The Stags dug deep after losing Rees and Halley, showing amazing strength in possession.
The scrum produced some magic as well-worked moves eventually provided Marshall with the space to sprint over the line for his second try of the match and seal the victory.
Chesham now play Buckingham thirds on Saturday in what will be another mission to avenge a two-point defeat.
fixtures: Saturday, January 24. Southern Counties North: Aylesbury v Beaconsfield. Berks, Bucks & Oxon Leagues. Premier: Broadmoor Staff v Amersham & Chiltern. Premier A: Amersham & Chiltern 2nd v Windsor 2nd. One North: Chesham v Buckingham 3rd; High Wycombe 2nd v Beaconsfield 2nd.
CHESHAM U16s scored a hard-fought 27-17 win over Old Albanians who scored twice and were 10-0 up after 20 minutes while Chesham battled against the wind.
Alex Hanney scored a neat try following a quick penalty, with Jamie McKinnon converting, but Albanians added a third, converted, to restore their 10-point lead before half-time.
Chesham pulled five points back following a well managed scrum, with Hanney passing to Ollie Cato who evaded several tackles to score in the corner.
The equaliser came when Hanney ran a penalty for Cato to power forward and go over.
Chesham finally took the lead when Tom Cullen’s monster kick was too much for Albanians, and Imanol Walsh punished them with a great running drive coming in from the wing. It was James Cridland whose head emerged triumphant from the line.
Alex Partington wrapped up the scoring in style after Alex Batt zipped up the blind side from a scrum, nearly making the line himself.