Depleted Chichester colts are too strong for Haywards Heath

Chichester won their under-18 Sussex Premiership match at Haywards Heath 14-0 - despite being without several regular starters and facing one of their toughest opponents.

In the first half Chichester played up the slope and into the wind.

In a period of sustained pressure, Chichester’s defence held firm and eventually cleared their lines.

The ball was won on the halfway line; Will Hunter made a break and fed Callum Munday, who ran with great speed along the wing, before cutting back inside and drawing Heath’s full-back, then unselfishly offloading to Harry Martin, who scored under the posts.

Henry Luxton’s conversion gave Chichester a 7-0 lead.

Just before the interval, Haywards Heath were awarded a very kickable penalty in front of the posts but the referee reversed his decision after one of their players waded into a scuffle that was nothing to do with him and cost his team valuable points.

It was clear Chichester would have to defend bravely and maintain their discipline. Chichester looked more composed in the second half and took advantage of the wind and slope.

The forwards began to dominate in set scrums and when Harry Shonk took a ball against the head on the 22m line, Alex Grace picked up and charged forward to suck in the Heath defence.

Quick ball from the ensuing ruck came to Luxton, who capped his man-of-the-match performance with a superb sidestep to score the winning try, which he calmly converted.

Several turnovers in the rucks and mauls, with captain Joe Woods at his imperious best, made sure Chichester kept a clean sheet.

Just before the end, centre Toby Patten was on the receiving end of a monstrous tackle, which broke his collarbone in two places.

Chichester maintained their 100 per cent record in all competitions and on Sunday travel to Harrow in the third round of the under-19 National Cup.

CHICHESTER: Joe Wooods, Harry Shonk, Curtis Boxall, Luke Kemish, Tom Stride, Luke Inkle, Shane Menage, Alex Grace, Nathan Tucker, Henry Luxton, Callum Munday, Harry Martin, Ben Clink, Will Hunter, Nat Jackson, Mike Dudley, Tom Stockton, Andrew Smith, Craig Rivard, Alex Baker, Toby Patten.