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Chelmsford 23 Enfield 15
5:00pm Wednesday 13th March 2013 in Local Sport
RUGBY: Chelmsford came from behind to move into fifth place in the league table with a win over rivals Enfield.
On the back of four straight wins, Enfield were confident of extending their winning sequence.
The visitors played down the slope in the first half, and they applied the early pressure. They were unlucky not to score in the first few minutes when they were pressurising the Chelmsford line in the left hand corner, but turnover ball saw full back Simon Hoult relieve the pressure.
Enfield were first to score when Tom Moore was on hand to get a well worked try. Minutes later Simon Hoult failed narrowly with a long range penalty from 40 metres out, when his kick fell short.
Chelmsford were then dealt a blow when hooker Jim Cooke was yellow carded for a stamping offence, so the home side were down to 14 men.
After 35 minutes, Chelmsford were caught napping when the visitors exploited the blind side and wing Dannan O’Meachair touched down in the corner and with scrum half Jordan Wilson converting, Enfield increased their lead to 12-0. Minutes before half time, Chelmsford scored a vital try to bring them back into the game.
Following a penalty kick to touch they applied the pressure on the visitors line and then from a resultant free kick, flanker Josh Clarke dived over the line to score an unconverted try.
At the break Chelmsford brought on substitutes Dean Lester and Chris Bown to add some bulk to their pack and also to increase the forward momentum.
After only three minutes Chelmsford were awarded a penalty when Enfield were penalised for not releasing the ball and Simon Hoult slotted the kick over from 33 metres out to reduce the arrears to four points.
But they gave away a penalty a few minutes later and Jordan Wilson made no mistake with his kick to restore the lead to 8-15.
But Chelmsford began to dominate the second half, and the pack increased its intensity and they in turn put pressure on the much heavier Enfield pack.
Some 12 minutes into the half Chelmsford won a line out ball and a catch and drive followed, which saw Paul Redford go over for a try to reduce the arrears to 13-15.
Enfield now found themselves on the wrong side of the referee, and a yellow card offence saw them reduced to 14 men.
With 25 minutes of the half gone, Simon Hoult spurned a penalty kick to goal and from a line out the ball was then worked through the phases, and Paul Redford took a pass at pace and charged over the line for his second try to take the home side into an 18-15 lead.
With just four minutes left Chelmsford scored their best try of the game when Paul Smedley made a great break through the cover defence and dived over in the corner to record his 15th try of the season.
Simon Hoult’s conversion hit the post, but Chelmsford still ran out worthy winners by 23 points to 15.