Friday, October 4, 2013
Topsham 10, Sidmouth 24
Sidmouth Under-16s produced their best collective performance to date this season to return from Topsham with a superb victory, writes Stuart Cavin.
With many familiar faces missing it was tipped to be a very close match. Aaron Bagwell captained the side and led by example.
The first try of the game came from a Topsham line-out; Oli Aplin stole the ball in the air which led to quick ball to the backs and, with the Tops back-pedalling due to slick hands by the backs, it left a two-on-one which Dave Chan executed perfectly to leave Jack Rowe to use his pace to score in the corner.
Topsham responded, but Sidmouth were soon on the front foot with big tackles coming in from many forwards including Theo Headon, Lucan Hornsnell and Aplin.
A turnover resulted in Jamie Walker, who made yards all match long, in space.
The resulting ruck provided quick play and good interplay between Max Moore and Will Counsell saw Counsell cut through the home defence to score under the posts.
A moment of excellence by Counsell, with a quick tap and chip made over 50 yards; the forwards who had worked tirelessly all day, turned the ball over to see Rowe fly past his winger and then a sidestep past the full back, a brilliant solo try to finish off the first half.
The second half began with sustained Topsham pressure which eventually resulted in them getting to within 10 points at 17-10.
However, a trademark Chan move saw his opposite number back-pedalling and Chan sealed the victory, dotting down under the posts. The effort from the whole squad was truly phenomenal. Crunching tackles where made all game by Headon, Hornsnell, Aplin , Will Thomas, Henry Thomas, Sam Harris and Moore, the set-piece was faultless thanks to Dan Swain and Aplin and the whole of the back line played well, including Ed Polly, who, playing out of position at full-back, had a great game.