On a Glorious Mother’s Day morning Cinderford made the longish trip to Stow on the Wold, a picturesque little town not unlike Cinderford in many respects, as many of the supporters commented.
The pitch looked firm, however closer inspection showed it to be far from that.
Cinderford kicked off with the stiff breeze on their backs and penned Stow into their own half for the opening ten minutes, however they struggled to make inroads as the Stow defence was up extremely quickly, some would say too quickly, and stifled the Cinderford attack.
Cinderford were wise enough to realise their opponent’s tactics and changed their game plan accordingly. The next phase of possession saw Cinderford adopt the pre-planned chip and chase approach which was perfectly executed and resulted in the opening try.
Stow continued to press quickly, however another nicely weighted chip and a favourable bounce saw Cinderford add their second try. The third try followed shortly after with Cinderford once again taking advantage of the rush defence by putting a pin point cross field kick which was brilliantly gathered by the Cinderford wing.
The second half saw Stow coming more into the game and saw them dropping their two wings right back, effectively playing with three full backs in an attempt to combat Cinderford’s kicking game.
After their first concerted attack of the Cinderford line Stow were awarded a try.
Cinderford’s response was immediate, once again it was a kick that proved Stow’s undoing, a high hanging kick into the swirling wind was more than the three full backs could cope with, the Cinderford forwards were quick to capitalise on the bouncing ball and drove over from close range.
Cinderford then surprised Stow by keeping the ball in hand moving the ball along the line to out flank the Stow defence, who had their winger playing deep, and score out wide.
Cinderford then scored two further tries, the first from a chip and chase and the second with another long cross field kick.
It was Stow however, who had the last word as from a high kick their wing gathered the bouncing ball ahead of the Cinderford cover to score under the posts.
This game was close to being a kicking masterclass, Cinderford kept Stow on the back foot through their deft chips and also varied their kicking so that the opposition were always second guessing where the next kick would go.
Final Score: Stow on the Wold 14 Cinderford 51