Sidmouth picked the right game to produce their best performance of the season against second placed Crediton to strengthen their chances of winning the league, writes Terry O’Brien. The 44-19 victory means that just five points from three games are required to ensure a top place finish.

In the first 20 minutes, there was little indication of what was to follow. The Chiefs had a slight edge and had a great opportunity to open the scoring on the quarter hour but failed to do so. However, they kept play in the Crediton half and eventually took the lead with a Jake Allen penalty.

The first try followed five minutes later when Sam Heathcote fielded a missed touch kick and ran back into the 22. The ball was moved to Archie Cruze on the blindside of a ruck, and he powered through two tackles to touch down in the right corner for an unconverted try.

The Chiefs took control for the remainder of the half and were rewarded with two Tom Hodge tries. First, he ran a good line from a ruck near the line before he ran through two tackles from the 22 to touch down under the posts.

Both tries were converted to make the half-time score 22-0.

The important bonus point, fourth try, came two minutes into the second half when a peel around the back of a lineout inside the Sidmouth half had Sean Malton sending Jake Smith through a gap. He drew the full back before handing on for Cian Warren to run in under the posts. Jake Allen converted.

With the Chiefs’ line-up disrupted by three injuries, Crediton fought back to score a fine try thanks to smooth handling to an overlap on the left wing.

A second try looked certain when the right winger broke clear from his own 22 but Rory O’Brien got back to make a try saving tackle. However, Crediton maintained the attacking position and the right winger finished off a quick tap penalty move. The fly half added the conversion.

A Tom Hodge break created a converted try for Sam Heathcote to halt a potential come-back. Hodge was in the action again to complete his hattrick from close range after a Harry Emmett break had taken play deep into the Crediton 22.

Crediton scored a third try when a diagonal kick by the fly half found his right winger in space to touch down with five minutes to play. The Chiefs completed the scoring with a Jake Allen penalty in injury time.

On Saturday, the Sidmouth Veterans entertain Honiton 2nds in a contest for the David Turner Cup. Kick off at the Blackmore Field is at 2.30pm. The Colts play Ivybridge at Sidford kicking off at 2.30pm.