An improvement all round
Thurrock 4ths go down again
Thurrock 4ths were a bit below their normal squad, as they had lost an entire front row plus to injury, namely Steve B, Ricky L, Dom D and Lionel D and various operations. This led to debuts for loose head Brad Day and hooker Paul Callow, (who hadn’t played at all for a number of years!!) There was also a welcome return for tight head Ben Driscoll, who hadn’t played a full game for a number of years.
The 4ths attacked from the off and had much of the play for the first 15 minutes or so, without scoring. However, it was Chelmsford that scored first, with their only break out, a succession of rucks, that led to a score wide out. Again, the 4ths got back to their attacking play and, from a scrum in the just inside the Chelmsford half, number 8 Brad Rettigan broke open and the ball was popped to wing Sam Gooderham on the burst, who went in under the posts. Converted Cairns. Chelmsford 4ths then came back strongly and Thurrock had to defend and defend for some time on their own line. From a quick tap penalty within the Chelmsford 22, the ball was popped to skipper, Arron Crooks, who went in under the posts. Converted Cairns. At half time Thurrock 4ths were comfortably in the lead 14 – 5.
The second half started badly for Thurrock, as an easy pass was intercepted, allowing the Chelmsford centre to go in under the posts. This galvanised Chelmsford considerably all round. The pressure eventually told and, while one Thurrock player was in the sin bin, Chelmsford took great advantage of this and scored two unanswered tries. The pressure on Thurrock was constant, as Chelmsford had their tails up by now, but it was Matt Ulph who scored for Thurrock against the general flow of play. The last play was when Chelmsford again intercepted a ball in the centre and went in under the posts. Thurrock went down 21 – 38, to a very good all round Chelmsford 4th team.
Thurrock await their fate in the League Finals, finishing 4th or 5th in their promotion season.