Rugby Round-Up from the East Devon region
- Credit: Withycombe Rugby
Size may not be everything on a rugby pitch, but it often helps and Exmouth felt the full force of the big Weston-super-Mare pack in a jolting 31-0 defeat at the Imperial Recreation Ground.
The Cockles are still fourth in the Tribute South West Premier Division and Weston fifth, but after their recent good form and a spirited display away to previously unbeaten Exeter University the previous weekend, this was an unexpectedly heavy defeat, especially at home.
Weston led 14-0 at half-time and never looked back.
Exmouth, who have given valuable experience to several younger players this season, have a week to regroup before what should be an even tougher assignment this Saturday.
New leaders Hornets, also from Weston, are the visitors to the Rec' after they became the first team to beat Exeter University (22-17) and knocked the students off the top of the table.
Sidmouth's lean spell in SW Division One continues, but they were up against the leaders, Chew Valley, at Blackmore. Valley won there 31-17.
Sidmouth travel to mid-table Crediton this Saturday.
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Definitely on the rise are Withycombe in Cornwall/Devon Division.
The Withies had a 'heart-to-heart' after a 23-14 defeat at Newquay recently, believing that inconsistent results were not reflecting the ability or potential in the squad.
Danny Samson was appointed as the new vice-captain, a small group of senior players was set up to sharpen decision-making and the results have been immediate.
Withycombe have beaten Torquay Athletic and, last weekend, North Tawton 27-3 away, earning nine out of ten points in the process and lifting themselves up to eighth in the table.
Resisting a spell of home pressure just after half-time proved key to a convincing victory this time, thanks to forward tries by Will Hockin, Luke Pattison and Mike Richards, topped up by 12 points from the boot of fly-half Tom Cooke.
Withycombe have a chance to maintain that upward curve when Veor are the visitors to Raleigh Park this Saturday.
Topsham tightened their grip on top spot with a 24-14 win over third-placed Bude at the Bonfire Field, and they make the short trip up to Cullompton this week.