A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME


By Jonnybrowne
September 15 2020

My first match report - blame any errors on my not being able to read my own handwriting the following day.......Differing circumstances had led both Sarries and Chiefs to name largely youthful matchday 23s, with a smattering of wise and comparatively olds heads in Calum Clark, who was captaining Sarries, while Don Armand skippered his young charges abetted by Phil Dollman and, on the bench, Dave Dennis.

I’d predicted 32-17 to Sarries on the pre-match #VirtualOasis but after the Wasps game who knew what would happen – even a mostly wet behind the ears Chiefs side would not be a pushover.

It was a lovely day here in North London, and in the pre-match punditry/time killing Lawrence Dallaglio had said nice things about our academy, so all was right with the world except that we weren’t sunning
ourselves outside the Oasis with a cold pint and a steak and ale pie.

The early minutes of the game indicated that we were in for a decent physical encounter with the first action of note coming from a penalty to Sarries which resulted in a good rolling maul. Good work by Hunter-Hill and Crean, and Vunipola played a looping pass out to Segun who scampered over to open the scoring. 5-0 to Sarries after only 6 minutes.

Vunipola’s attempted conversion hit the post.

Our lads were all looking good – Venter looks a bargain, Morris continuing his good form, the youthful midfield of Vunipola and Tom Whiteley were calm and assured, Crean putting in a good shift, Hooley looking classy at full-back, Clarey working hard. Chiefs also have a lot of good prospects coming through, with Snow, Hodge, Cordero Jr and Keast among others showing a lot of promise.

A penalty to Chiefs led to a characteristic drive towards the line – the ball was held up on the line, another penalty for offside, then another. Chiefs pounded away, the ball spiralled wide, and with remarkable dexterity Phil Dollman switched hands in mid-air and found the young Cordero who went over to make it 5-5 only five minutes after our try. It was then Chiefs’ turn to hit the post with their conversion.

The game was shaping up into a good contest, and Alex Sanderson declared he was happy at 20 minutes.

Shortly afterwards the impressive Sloan went off for an HIA to be replaced to Socino.

Vunipola hit the post again (when was the last time anyone saw that happen three times in one half???) before slotting the first successful kick of the game. 8-5.

Sarries put a bit more daylight between the sides just before the interval after a lineout following a Sarries penalty, albeit having been thrown long by Pifeleti, found Socino (now on permanently) who after a good carry offloaded to Morris who went over, having a few minutes before had a try disallowed , with Vunipola converting successfully this time for 15-5.

Half time, and a quick refreshment break.

Have to comment at this point that considering there was no official crowd at Allianz there was a lot of noise coming from the stands.

Big Josh Ibuanokpe replaced Clarey at half time, to the accompaniment of some bizarre pundit chatter about Clarey and a zombie apocalypse….did I miss something?

Sarries drew first blood early in the half with two penalties, the second of which, off Dollman, was slotted over with aplomb (love that word) by Vunipola for 18-5.

Day came on to replace Whiteley early in the second half who had by that point seemingly played the minutes he was allowed to under the player welfare regulations.

Chiefs won a penalty, and kicked long to set up another trademark “rumble”, which eventually got Witty close enough to cleverly roll and dot the ball on the line. A missed conversion left it at18-10.

Chiefs weren’t giving up and a penalty took them forward but a penalty to Sarries coughed up the ball. The resulting lineout took Pifeleti forward, then Ibuanokpe rumbled on to win another penalty which Vunipola stroked over for 21-10.

The re-start resulted in a Sarries scrum, leading to the other contender for try of the match (you’ve got to give Dollman credit for his skill in creating Cordero’s effort) when Day found Segun after a good run, and a beautifully floated crossfield kick from Vunipola found Obatoyinbo who glided over for 26-10. The conversion was unsuccessful.

A few minutes later, a Sarries penalty got us within ten metres of the Chiefs line but the drive was stopped by a scrum to Chiefs which Sarries stole the ball from and pushed to the line. Venter looked to have dotted down for a richly deserved try. The TMO said “yes”. After a bit of tee-straightening Vunipola added the extras for 33-10 and Sarries were in control.

Chiefs, as you’d expect them to, kept playing although Don Armand was warned about repeated infringements.

After a couple of scrum re-sets, the ref could clearly be heard saying that the lads were “messing around too much” and then shortly afterwards warned Don Armand again after another penalty was coughed up.

Sarries drove forward, and after more good work from Venter the immense Boon got over, with a successful conversion making it 40-10.

The last meaningful action of the match, just after 80 minutes, was Dave Dennis going over after a good spell of Chiefs pressure. Successful conversion and that was it at 40-17.

VERY entertaining match and both sides can take a lot from it.

MOM - Pifeleti

Teams:

Sarries: Hooley; Segun, Morris, Sloan, Obatoyinbo; Manu Vunipola, Whiteley; Crean, Pifeleti, Clarey, Kpoku, Hunter-Hill, Clark (capt), Reffell, Venter.

Replacements: Woolstencroft, Hislop, Ibuanokpe, Boon, Christie, Day, Socino, Hallett.

Exeter Chiefs: Dollman; Hodge, Baldwin, Wyatt, Cordero; H Skinner, Snow; Keast, Innard, Petch, Witty, Price, Lonsdale, Capstick, Armand (capt).

Replacements: Poole, Kenny, Johnson, Dennis, Hinkley, Yarnell, Walsh, Mehson.

pqs: qs:
A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME
Posted by: TheSaracens.com (IP Logged)
Date: 15/09/2020 16:59

Thanks very much Jonny
report now back where it deserves to be!



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2020:09:24:13:31:20 by Darraghgirl.

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME - SARRIES V CHIEFS 13.09.29
Posted by: OldMarovian (IP Logged)
Date: 14/09/2020 17:33

Nice report JB.
thumbs down

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME - SARRIES V CHIEFS 13.09.29
Posted by: Innings (IP Logged)
Date: 14/09/2020 17:50

Thanks, a very readable summation of a good afternoon. Although some writers elsewhere thought that the referee was one-eyed in favour of Sarries, others might argue that his leniency in handling the Chiefs' seven, or was it eight, infringements within their red zone, in the space of a dozen minutes, was somewhat one-eyed in the other direction; many would have expected the referee to go hand in pocket before the end of that period. However, he managed a fast, flowing game in a way that led to widespread appreciation of the overall experience for those watching.

Innings

Points win matches: tries win hearts and minds.

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME - SARRIES v CHIEFS 13.09.20
Posted by: The Bard (IP Logged)
Date: 14/09/2020 21:28

Good report on a good game!

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME - SARRIES v CHIEFS 13.09.20
Posted by: Barty II (IP Logged)
Date: 15/09/2020 07:06

For those wondering what the Alec Clarey Zombie chat is about (we have also discussed this on the Fezcast!)

Alec Clarey's Zombie Survival Tutorial Part 1

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME
Posted by: TonyTaff (IP Logged)
Date: 16/09/2020 10:00

Excellent report. Thanks

£721.05 (*) donated to the Saracens Foundation due to visits to the Sarries frontpage [www.rugbynetwork.net]

Please read and submit articles for publication.


(*) As at October 31, 2018.

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME
Posted by: jonnybrowne (IP Logged)
Date: 16/09/2020 14:10

Quote:
TheSaracens.com
Thanks very much Jonny
report now back where it deserves to be!

Hope it was OK. Enjoyed writing it, happy to take my turn with reports in the future if it helps.

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME - SARRIES V CHIEFS 13.09.29
Posted by: jonnybrowne (IP Logged)
Date: 16/09/2020 17:06

Quote:
Innings
Thanks, a very readable summation of a good afternoon. Although some writers elsewhere thought that the referee was one-eyed in favour of Sarries, others might argue that his leniency in handling the Chiefs' seven, or was it eight, infringements within their red zone, in the space of a dozen minutes, was somewhat one-eyed in the other direction; many would have expected the referee to go hand in pocket before the end of that period. However, he managed a fast, flowing game in a way that led to widespread appreciation of the overall experience for those watching.

Thank you, Innings, Iím delighted you enjoyed it. It was a nice game to write about. I did feel that the ref was pretty lenient with Chiefs, letting things go without a card after two warnings (I think it was seven infringements) and did originally make the point in my report to that effect but concluded that in the context and spirit of an entertaining match with a ref that as you rightly say let the game flow, and Sarries were well ahead, it was enough to make brief reference to the three conversations heíd had within a short spell. I think Adam Lealís going to have a good career.

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME
Posted by: TonyTaff (IP Logged)
Date: 17/09/2020 16:15

Cheers Jonny, good to have you on board.

The reason for asking for articles to be published on the front page is that Sportnetwork raise advertising revenue based on front page hits, but not from messsgeboard visits.

They then pay a small percentage to the sites driving the revenue. We have mandated that all the revenue goes to the Sarries Foundation. So you won't get rich, I am afraid!

Obviously, the advertising revenue is low in these epidemic times.

£721.05 (*) donated to the Saracens Foundation due to visits to the Sarries frontpage [www.rugbynetwork.net]

Please read and submit articles for publication.


(*) As at October 31, 2018.

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME
Posted by: jonnybrowne (IP Logged)
Date: 17/09/2020 16:23

Quote:
TonyTaff
Cheers Jonny, good to have you on board.
The reason for asking for articles to be published on the front page is that Sportnetwork raise advertising revenue based on front page hits, but not from messsgeboard visits.

They then pay a small percentage to the sites driving the revenue. We have mandated that all the revenue goes to the Sarries Foundation. So you won't get rich, I am afraid!

Obviously, the advertising revenue is low in
these epidemic times.

Ah, understood - thank you TT!

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME
Posted by: AP (IP Logged)
Date: 18/09/2020 09:32

"Obviously, the advertising revenue is low in these epidemic times."

Have we raised anything since 31 October 2018?!

Successful hills are here to stay
Everything must be this way
Gentle streets where people play
Welcome to the Soft Parade

Re: A HIGHLY ENTERTAINING GAME
Posted by: TonyTaff (IP Logged)
Date: 18/09/2020 14:36

Quote:
AP
"Obviously, the advertising revenue is low in these epidemic times."
Have we raised anything since 31 October 2018?!

I need to chase up the Sportnetwork office. Either their emails to me go astray, or they forget - their accounts clerks change quite frequently!

£721.05 (*) donated to the Saracens Foundation due to visits to the Sarries frontpage [www.rugbynetwork.net]

Please read and submit articles for publication.


(*) As at October 31, 2018.

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