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Chichester still suffering with the away day blues

Chichester are still searching for an elusive away win in London One South after a disappointing 36-12 loss at Belsize Park.


After a great win against promotion-chasing Camber- ley, Chi made the trip to one of the promoted sides full of optimism.


But they found themselves outmuscled by a large and well-drilled pack as they game got away from them in the first half-hour as they fell 24-0 behind.


Blues made seven changes to the side that beat Camberley. Debutant Alfie Montague and Ben Polhill came into the forwards, Josh Goodwin and Toby Golds returned in the backs while Kyle Armstrong and Tom Knight made the bench.


Large, mobile and well drilled, Park were relentless for the first 18 minutes as Blues tried everything they could to stem the advance. Chichester found themselves 17-0 down having conceded three tries.


From the restart, a Belsize Park clearance kick gave Chi rare possession and Chris Johnson, at his rampaging best, carried the ball forward.


But a missed tackle provided Belsize Park with their bonus point with a fourth try.


Blues rallied as Tyrese Makasi chased every loose ball, Gareth Davies felled props and Josh Goodwin delivered accurate, long flat passes.


Davies chased a kick through and Belsize conceded a penalty. The referee walked them back ten metres for back chat and Chi kicked to the corner. The ball was secured at the lineout by Nick Blount and Davies darted over from acting scrum half to dot down on the line. Davies converted to make it 24-7 at half-time.


Belsize Park got an early fifth try (31-7) but as the opposition pack tired Chi moved the ball around with big carries from Ben Deavall, Martin O’Callaghan and Charlie Wallace. Using Chris Johnson at every opportunity, the No. 8 burst through the defence on the 22 metre line and off -loaded to Rhys Thompson to score in the corner on 52 minutes. Belsize Park added one more try.


Chichester end the first half of the season in seventh place.


Supporters’ men of the match were Davies and Makasi.


Chi’s final match of the year is tomorrow when they entertain Havant at Oaklands Park in the A27 derby (2pm KO).


Bognor stormed to a 30-7 win over Alton in Hampshire Premier thanks to tries from Freddie Burgess, Chris Webb, Ben Luxton, Tom James and George Castleton.


Jeremy Newton kicked a penalty and conversion.


Skipper Josh Burgess said: “Our defence was spot on for 80 minutes and we didn’t let them have any time on the ball.


“Our set-piece was brilliant, especially the scrummaging.


“Sam Newcombe controlled the game really well from scrum half.”


Bognor are at Havant II tomorrow.

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