Bournemouth 27 Chinnor 26
CHINNOR suffered an agonising defeat by a single point despite a brave comeback at rivals Bournemouth at the weekend.
The match, played in front a crowd of 1,200, saw Chinnor produce a stirring fightback but their superb efforts went unrewarded in what was an epic match.
Victory leaves Bournemouth eight points clear at the top of National Three South West and firm favourites to lift the title, while Chinnor must now regroup to try and earn at least a play-off spot.
James Cathcart had a penalty to win the match with the last kick, but saw his effort from drift to the left of the posts.
Before that Chinnor had battled back from 24-9 down to lead 26-24, despite having three players sin-binned throughout various stages of the game.
Bournemouth’s assured fly half Dan Pollard got the winning points after Chinnor had taken the lead.
Bournemouth were the better side in the opening half and should have been further ahead after the break.
But, Chinnor came storming back into the game with wing Pip Seymour scoring two tries.
Bournemouth had two early let-offs with question marks over the referee’s decision to rule that Cathcart’s penalty had missed the posts.
Then scrum half Sam Hardcastle knocked on as he tried to catch the kick behind the goal line, but Bournemouth spoiled Chinnor’s five-metre scrum and cleared.
Centre Sam Stoop hit a post with a drop-goal attempt before Pollard and Cathcart each stroked home penalty kicks.
Pollard slotted a second penalty and Chinnor flanker Harry Jackman was then sin-binned. Bournemouth took advantage touching down twice.
A penalty apiece from Cathcart and Pollard completed the first half with the hosts well on top.
Seymour scored from prop Joe Pickett’s pass and Cathcart converted to kickstart the Chinnor comeback.
Another Cathcart penalty made things interesting and on 70 minutes a quick breakaway saw Seymour score again with Cathcart converting (26-24).
Chinnor were penalised at the next scrum and Pollard nailed the kick (26-27).
Chinnor earned a penalty in the dying embers but Cathcart could not repeat his heroics with the boot and the visitors lost only their second game in the last 22, but second on the trot.