SOUTHEND Saxons surged through to the semi-finals of the Essex Cup with a 20-0 win against Chingford at Warners Bridge.

Saxons’ director of rugby Josh Ward opted to change his starting line-up for the clash.

And he was pleased with how the new-look starting line-up performed.

“I was really pleased,” said Ward.

“There were some really young guys out there and the maturity and the professionalism they showed to get the job done was excellent.

“The first half we controlled really well, we utilised their ill-discipline for territory gain and scored some good tries. Our senior lads showed great leadership throughout which helped us through but the second half was disappointing.

“It was very stop start and as a result we couldn’t build any momentum.

“But we put some great defensive sets together forcing errors and took scoring opportunities when they arrived which again showed some good game management and execution. To nil a side and get through to a semi-final is a great feeling.”

And Ward felt it also showed the strength in depth Southend now have.

“This showed the squad quality in depth we’ve been building over the past 18 months and the togetherness and energy of the group which is hugely satisfying,” said Ward.

“But we’ve got another big week now.”

Southend, who are second in London One North, host table-topping North Walsham on Saturday.