Cinderford United produced an emphatic third quarter display to score twenty one unanswered points and in doing so overturned a 15-3 half time deficit. With no more scoring in the last quarter the United were in the end deserving winners and their win secured back to back wins in the capital following their victory at Blackheath two weeks ago. The game kicked off at 1 pm to take into account the traffic around Twickenham and with the early travelling clearly taking its toll the United made a lethargic start. Their usual scrum dominance was undermined by the home side’s tactics which went strangely unpenalised by the nervous referee. The home side also possessed some dangerous runners in their back division and took the lead on fifteen minutes as they attacked from deep. Excellent handling and support running eventually saw their centre score close to the United posts. The conversion was secured and the United were on the back foot. Hard as they tried the United couldn’t get a foothold in the game. A penalty by United scrum half Danny Pointon did claw three points back but Scottish re-produced their terrific score from earlier as their backs pace exploited a creaking United scramble defence and the home full back scored a spectacular try that started from inside their own twenty two. The conversion was missed but just before half time a successful penalty goal following another scrum penalty against the United gave the home side a twelve point interval lead.

Following advice from his assessor the referee’s interpretations of the scrum changed dramatically in the second half. An early scrum ten metres from the Scottish line demonstrated this as the home scrum was rocked backwards. A clever change of direction by No 8 Jack Shields and Pointon gave centre Rob Winchle the space to score in the left hand corner. Pointon converted. United fly half Tom Law continually pinned the home back with some huge punts and from one, soon after Winchle’s try, the home side’s full back fumbled into touch close to his line. Quick thinking wing Nathan Green gathered and his rapid throw in found support runners and two phases later second row Toby Farrier crashed over. Pointon’s conversion gave the United the lead for the first time. The game was now too close to call as Scottish always looked dangerous when moving the ball. The United defence was noticeably better in the second half and their impressive line speed produced home handling errors. From one second row, and star performer, Milo Reynolds picked up a loose ball and showed impressive foot speed to score under the Scottish posts. Pointon converted and the United were two scores clear. The fact there were no more points scored was a combination of the United’s inability to finish off two gilt edged chances and an impressive defensive display by the young United side, particularly in negating the home side’s driving line out maul. By the end the United were justifiable winners and remain unbeaten in 2015 with five successive Zoo Shield victories.

Cinderford United; James Butler, Harrison Yorke (Liam Littleton), Alan Bryan (Captain), Rob Winchle, Nathan Green (Ollie Whiting), Tom Law, Danny Pointon, Mike Davies, Sam Baker, Elliot Booley, Angus Hodges (Toby Farrier), Milo Reynolds, Sam Morse, Will Hodgetts, Jack Shields.

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