LONDON 1 NORTH - Braintree 12 Chingford 15
BRAINTREE’s miserable run of results continued at Robbs Wood on Saturday as they narrowly lost a game that was there for the taking.
Realistically the black and ambers are now playing for pride and attempting to build for next season after posting a solitary win and a handful of bonus points this season.
But they missed out on carrying off all the spoils against Chingford because they failed to press home their territorial dominance and ended up being killed off by a late sucker punch.
The hosts got off to the best possible start when they scored from their first attack following Chingford’s kick-off.
Winger Joe Young took the ball deep into the visitors’ half and was unlucky to lose possession, but returning flanker Dean Cadby charged down the clearance kick to score in the corner.
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A superb conversion from inside centre Chas Monk gave the hosts a 7-0 lead .
Braintree remained in control for the opening quarter but despite their dominance they weren’t able to put further points on the board.
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Chingford drew level on 22 minutes after full-back Kurt Forward punctured the home defence to score in the right hand corner.
Fly-half Dan Boughtwood potted the conversion to level the scores and the apprehension seeped back into the black and ambers’ ranks.
Another Braintree score finally came three minutes before the break when number eight John Smillie scored his second try in successive games from a five-metre scrum to give his side a 12-7 interval lead.
Both sides were reduced to 14 men early in the second half, with Monk seeing yellow rather harshly after being adjudged to have failed to roll away from a tackle.
Chingford were able to narrow the gap to 10-12 thanks to a 59th minute Boughtwood penalty.
Three minutes from time disaster struck when visiting outside centre Brandon Hart broke through the defence to score an unconverted try to seal a 15-12 victory.