Boxing Day at the Blackmore brings mud, scrums and smiles

Action from the Boxing Day match at the Blackmore home of Sidmouth RFC

Action from the Boxing Day match at the Blackmore home of Sidmouth RFC - Credit: Archant

After last year’s lockdown, a good crowd lent an air of normality and celebration at the Annual Boxing Day tradition that is the President’s XV game at the Blackmore Field. Celebrating its 70th year, the event is given as much importance by the reunions in the bar as the game itself. 

The Chiefs kicked off on a muddy surface and took an early lead following a diagonal kick inside the opposing 22. A scramble for the ball resulted in the Chiefs winning a ruck and Tom Osborne was unmarked on the blindside to dive over for an unconverted try. 

Five minutes later, the Chiefs won a ruck inside their own half. Cameron Grainger broke from the base with an overlap to the left. The ball was quickly moved to Cian Warren, he outpaced the covering players before handing off the full back on his way to the line. Cole Monaghan kicked the conversion. 

Cian Warren showed his finishing ability again midway through the half on the end of a slick handling move, as he wrong-footed two defenders on his way to the line for a converted try. 

A long period of pressure by the President’s men was rewarded with a try when a long pass from Rory O’Brien found Joe Herbert in space to touch down in the right corner. Dom Lovesy added the conversion. 

Jeremy Massie Birch denied Cian Warren a third try with an excellent last-ditch tackle before the Chiefs scored a fourth try in injury time. George Locke finished off some slick inter-passing down the right touchline. 

The President’s XV regained possession from the restart kick and kept play inside the Chiefs half for a long period but could not find a way through the defence. 

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On their first visit into the opposing 22, Harry Emmett finished off a move on the left of a ruck from the halfway line. Cole Monaghan converted. 

With five minutes to go, Cian Warren eventually sealed his hat-trick and Monaghan’s conversion completed a 38-7 Chiefs win.      

Rugby takes a break on New Year’s Day and returns on January 8 when the Chiefs entertain Newent. 

Sidmouth Rugby Club team photo

Sidmouth Rugby Club team photo - Credit: Sidmouth Rugby Club