Hammer blow! Blues beaten by Hammersmith and Fulham
Hosts Hammersmith and Fulham had too much for the Blues at Hurlingham Park in London, winning 38-16 in a London one south clash.
A small contingent of the Chichester faithful made the journey on an unseasonably warm afternoon and the Blues made seven changes.
Will Norton returned in the pack, Gareth Davies, Matt McLagan, Harry Seaman and Tom Blewitt came into the backs, with Niall Wright and Josh Sankey, making his 1st XV debut, on the bench.
Hammersmith immediately had Chichester under pressure. On three minutes Blues won the first scrum of the match, on their 22m line, but gave the opposition centre a simple run in to score under the posts.
Chichester caused Hammersmith problems at the scrum and were awarded a penalty 15 metres out, slotted by Tom Blewitt, 7-3.
The opposition conceded another penalty and a sublime kick from Blewitt found the corner. But Hamersmith cleared their lines.
A lightning break penetrated the Chichester defence but the last man got in a tackle which spilled the ball, but it was a Hammersmith hand that touched it down for the try. Converted from out wide, 14-3.
Another infringement provided Blewitt with a penalty kick, 14-6.
The opposition hoisted a ball over the top which Tyrese Makasi took coolly under pressure.
His offload found Harry Seaman who cleared the ball 60 up the pitch. Chichester won the foot race and Hammersmith infringed to provide Blewitt with another penalty for 14-9. Then a Blues’ clearance didn’t find touch and Hammersmith’s centre sliced through the defence to make it 21-9 at the break.
Chichester started the second half playing almost exclusively in Hammersmith’s half, but an interception was run in from the halfway line on 50 minutes, converted, 28-9.
A yellow card reduced Hammersmith to 14 players.
Seaman, at scrum half, passed to Gareth Davies who chipped over the defence for Eddie Jenkinson to chase and dot down the loose ball for the try. A great conversion from Blewitt made it 28-16.
Hammersmith ended strongly with two converted tries.
The margin of defeat was hard on Blues after their gutsy performance, particularly in the second half. However, it was the pace and physicality of Hammersmith’s backs that made the difference.
MoM was Harry Seaman.
Chichester welcome Farnham to Oaklands Park on Saturday (2pm kick-off. All support welcome.