In the first match of 2017, with both teams seemly trying to shrug of the festival season, it lead to a match that saw both sides making numerous errors ensuring that the game was played on a “stop start manner, not enabling either side to set up any continuity in their play.
With both sides seemly evenly matched it was Beckenham who had the better of the opening exchanges and this lead to them taking the lead with a penalty after Charlton had offended one too many times in defence.
The weather conditions were to affect both side’s ball handling and this was a major factor in Charlton taking the lead when following a Beckenham knock on at the ensuing scrummage a slight wheel provided a slight gap for Alan Knuckey to break and following a chip the visitors were unable to control the ball which squirmed over Beckenham’s goal line. Knuckey, in hot pursuit of his chip, won the footrace enabling him to dive on the loose ball to score the opening try of the match, to which he subsequently added the conversion.
With Beckenham striving to reduce their narrow lead it was Charlton’s excellent work at the breakdown that lead to them taking the lead. Following good work by their back row at a breakdown by Charlton the ball reached Tshepo Mooki and his subsequent running and chip put Beckenham onto the back foot. Beckenham, were once again unable to control the ball and Mooki’s chasing of his chip saw him hack the ball forward and he regathered control to score Charlton’s second try of the game.
The remainder of the first half seemed to become more of an arm wrestle with both side’s efforts being negated by good defence punctuated with numerous errors and with injuries being suffered by both sides fragmented. Charlton further extended their lead with a successful penalty kick from Knuckey in the dying minutes of the half.
The second half, punctuated by the referee’s whistle, was relatively flat with play being condensed into the middle third of the pitch with both sides seemly unable to break through the opponents’ defence.
A successful penalty kick from Beckenham half way through the second half narrowed the deficit and the last ten minutes of the match saw Charlton, who had been reduced to fourteen men due to a yellow card, defensive qualities being tested as Beckenham laid siege to Charlton’s goal line in search of a score. Despite their numerical disadvantage Charlton withheld the onslaught to record their first win of the new year.
Next Saturday Charlton’s first and second teams visit Bromley with kick off at 2.00pm