Cinderford just edged out Hartpury in a very keenly contested local derby pre-season encounter.

The match was played over four twenty minute sessions and it was the Students who began the stronger and Cameron Roberts gave them a deserved lead, racing over in the corner with the conversion disallowed by the referee.

The second session again saw the home side in the ascendancy in the early stages and they went 10-0 ahead when George Boulton touched down after some good work by hooker Lewis Grinsell. Cinderford at last began to make some headway with their forwards exerting some real pressure at the scrum. After a series of penalties were awarded against their opponents the referee finally lost patience and awarded them a penalty try which Tom Law converted.

The third session remained scoreless, but the visiting forwards still held the advantage at the scrum and eventually their pressure told as the match went into the final session when scrum-half Clive Stuart-Smith stole away down the blindside to score what proved to be the winning try.

Cinderford will certainly be relieved to have secured a narrow victory over an impressive Hartpury side, who pushed them all the way. The squad will be hoping for a much improved performance when they travel to Welsh Premiership side Llandovery next Saturday for their second pre-season match.

Centenary Sevens

Cinderford won the Forest of Dean Centenary Sevens held at Ross-on-Wye RFC after defeating Newent 24-17 in the final. In their pool matches Cinderford defeated Drybrook 27-24, Bream 22-12 and a Combination team 62-0. In the semi-final they overcame Ross 29-5.