Superb Chinnor shatter Taunton’s proud home record

Sam Angell. Picture by Aaron Bayliss
Sam Angell. Picture by Aaron Bayliss

Chinnor continued their resurgence this week when they became the first team in 18 months to beat Taunton Titans in their own back yard.

Not only were they boasting an impressive home record, Taunton are also pushing for promotion this season but Chinnor were also in high spirits and went into this game on the back of successive wins.

Chinnor played with a strong wind in the first half and it took just five minutes for their forwards to drive a maul towards the Taunton line, enabling Ben Manning to force himself over for the opening try, well converted by Sam Angell from the touchline.

Taunton’s counter-attacks were well contained by the Chinnor defence and Angell’s boot regularly returned play into the Taunton half.

Another Chinnor driving maul from a line-out sucked in the opposition allowing Junior Fatialofa to dance through a gap and crash over under the posts for Chinnor’s second try, again converted by Angell.

Just before half-time, Taunton’s pressure caused them to charge down a Chinnor kick and boot it to the r try line, and centre Freddie Fraser won the foot race to score the home side’s first try to cut the deficit to 14-5 at half-time.

Taunton started the second half in similar fashion as Chinnor had in the first, using the wind and driving mauls to good effect as full-back Kingdom soon reduced their arrears to six with a penalty.

Chinnor eased the pressure when winger Henry Lamont sprinted 50 metres, only to be taken out by a high tackle, resulting in a yellow card for the Taunton player and the loss of a certain score.

Taunton maintained their pressure and a quickly taken penalty caught Chinnor’s defence unprepared allowing Sam Prior to charge over the line to score a try converted by Kingdom, giving Taunton a one point lead at 15-14.

But Chinnor did not buckle and the visiting forwards rose to the challenge and rampaged into the Taunton half with driving runs from the back row led by George Messum, ably supported by James Tyas and Alex Waddingham.

Another blind side break and swift handling, particularly by Frank Jones, put Heath away to score in the corner to put the away side 19-15 ahead.

Five minutes later, the forwards again drove deep into Taunton’s territory with replacement Jamie Townsend foraging and finally driving over for the fourth and bonus-point try, converted by Angell.

With 15 minutes left, Taunton tried everything but Chinnor’s defence stood resolute with continuous tackling by the three quarters and a set of forwards who refused to capitulate in the face of the Taunton onslaught and the home crowd were left to reflect on a first defeat in 18 months,

Chinnor are now 12th in Division Two South.