Chichester lads more than happy with Hove victory

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In Chichester under-16s’ previous encounter with Hove two seasons ago, Hove had inflicted a crushing defeat over a depleted Chichester team.

And those who were on the losing side then were determined to exact revenge. And they did just that, winning 48-12.

In almost perfect playing conditions, Chichester’s forwards were immediately on top and created a lot of ball for the backs to run with.

Poor handling kept on gifting possession back to Hove and their fast backs made good use of the scraps that came their way to open the scoring.

Chichester then camped back on the visitors’ line until scrum-half Henry Anscombe picked up from the back of a ruck and dived over to level the scores.

Hove soaked up more pressure and took the lead again with a fortunate but well-taken interception to score a breakaway try.

The Chichester pack began to win almost all the ball in the rucks and mauls and in the set scrums, their front five crushed their opponents with hooker Harry Shonk taking advantage of the solid platform to win ball after ball against the head.

Just before the interval, the forwards drove a rolling maul past the Hove 22 and the ball came out to open-side flanker Charlie Wallace, who cut back inside and burst through two tackles to go over. Early in the second half, winger Nat Jackson caught a high ball and slipped it to skipper Shane Menage, who carved his way 50m through the Hove defence before popping the ball off to No8 Alex Grace, who completed the move to give Chichester the lead.

Nathan Tucker, who had come on at scrum-half, scored the first of two tries.

Anscombe kicked a superb punt that travelled half the length of the pitch and into touch five metres from the try line. Lock Luke Kemish won the lineout and the ball flew along the back-line to full-back Alex Baker to touch down in the opposite corner. Anscombe scored his second try with an outrageous sidestep before outside centre Harry Martin used a sharp change of direction to cut back inside, handing-off the Hove defence to score under the posts.

The final try was scored when Tucker found space to dart through and Anscombe’s fourth conversion completed the rout.

CHICHESTER: Michael Dudley, Harry Shonk, Andrew Smith, Luke Kemish, Luke Bulpett, Shane Menage, Charlie Wallace, Alex Grace, Henry Anscombe, Benny Bruce, Charlie Grantham, Dan Jackson, Harry Martin, Nat Jackson, Alex Baker, Mark Knight, Matt Harwood, Michael Dinan, Nathan Tucker, Ben Barnes, Ian Carruthers, Barnaby Steel.