Rossendale 0 Chester 10
CHESTER confirmed their fourth-placed finish in National Three North after battling their way to victory on Saturday in tough conditions.
With the hosts’ pitch in poor condition due to torrential rain during the week, the Hare Lane outfit only found out on Friday evening that the game was being given the green light.
Chester director of rugby Tim Doig said: “The conditions were tough and in the first half the lads struggled with the wind and the sloping pitch. We didn’t get going for the first 40 minutes.
“Once we had a word with them at half time we came out and were much better. I was happy with the performance and Andy Moore in particular was outstanding”.
Doig’s men struggled to get a foothold in the game early on, with much of the rugby being played deep in their own half.
To add to their early struggle, Ross White was sin-binned as Chester entered a crazy spell, conceding no less than 10 penalties in the space of 10 minutes.
Despite much pressure from a home side keen to take advantage of their numerical advantage, the Chester defence held firm, eventually winning a clean ball to clear their line.
With the game scoreless at the interval, Doig’s charges came out in the second period with renewed vigour and proceeded to take advantage of Rossendale’s sloping pitch.
The Chester pack looked to attack into the heart of the Rossendale defence with Moore making life very uncomfortable for the home side.
Fly-half Lloyd Hayes converted a difficult penalty to open the scoring while five minutes later Pat Coy carved up the defence to score a great try with Hayes converting to take the visitors well clear of their hosts. Rossendale refused to lie down and threw everything at Chester during the closing stages but were unable to puncture the visitors well drilled line.
Doig said: “I’m happy with how we’ve done this season as it’s been my first year in charge and has been a learning curve. I am happy with fourth place and we can build on it next year.”
Chester are away to West Park St Helens this Saturday. Their final match of the season is away to Stockport on Saturday, April 10.
In South Lancs/Cheshire Three on Saturday, Helsby went down 92-0 at Linley. On Saturday they travel to Prenton.
Christleton were 48-0 home winners over Eagle 2nds on Saturday in Division Four West of the Miller Homes League. They face a derby at Chester 3rds this Saturday.