It was the annual Player and Ex Players lunch at Cobham on Saturday, an opportunity for past and present players to get together chew the cud and re score some of those past tries especially the ones that were not given
Director of rugby Steve Pope introduced Captain Olly Fox in the new pink warm up shirt kindly sponsored by Richard Spratt's catering company Hot Rocks and reflected on a challenging season to date commenting that 54 players had been used during the 11 games played. Whilst that reflects a great talent pool of youth players it creates it own obvious difficulties and injuries and unavailability were going to test Cobham in the match that followed
The match report for the previous weeks away fixture against Dartfordians (http://www.dartfordiansrfc.co.uk/teams/354/match-centre/1-3630032) told its own story and Cobham were looking to bounce back against a Chichester side who had also had a difficult start to the season but who won their last three matches.
Chi got into their stride quickly and achieved the important first score when they converted line out ball onto a rolling maul that released scrum half Harry Seaman to go over 0-5
Olly Rocket coming into the Cobham back line for his debut lived up to his name when he got the ball and there were some excellent runs from Theo Buffini, Jake MacQuade and James MacDonald but they couldn't be converted into points. As the rain came so did a flurry of penalties on an afternoon which will have tested the referee's patience. Cobham 's Luke Flower put over three to Chichester's Charlie Norton's two for the half time score to read Cobham 9-11 but that score line somewhat flattered the home side who struggled up front against a larger scrum.
The second half saw Chi move further ahead with tries from centres Renwick and Robson 9-21 but when a yellow card for persistent infringements took Chi down to 14 men Cobham came close to converting the pressure into points. Unfortunately it was to be an afternoon where the last pass for Cobham frequently went astray.
With Chichester desperate for the bonus point fourth try they were rewarded in the final minute as centre Rhys Thompson went over in the corner and Norton added the extras.
Cobham's average point score per game for the season had been 26 before this match with a healthy try count so it will have been disappointing not to have crossed the line for the first time in recent playing history.
Director of rugby Steve Pope said after the game "Congratulations to Chichester they took some hard earned but well deserved points today.
1. Ryan Ajula
2 Theo Buffini
7.Olly Fox ( Captain)
Penalties: Luke Flower (3)