Sidmouth Chiefs comfortably into Devon Senior Cup quarter-finals

PUBLISHED: 13:15 26 January 2009 | UPDATED: 12:21 17 June 2010

The Chiefs progressed to the quarter finals of the Devon Senior Cup with a comfortable win over Crediton in a match played on Sunday.  A try within two minutes of the kick- off hinted at a heavy defeat for a team which plays two leagues below Sidmouth.

The Chiefs progressed to the quarter finals of the Devon Senior Cup with a comfortable win over Crediton in a match played on Sunday.

A try within two minutes of the kick- off hinted at a heavy defeat for a team which plays two leagues below Sidmouth.

However, a combination of a gutsy performance and a treacherous playing surface produced a respectable scoreline.

A 30-minute break at halftime, due to the arrival of the air ambulance, also would not have helped concentration. The Crediton scrum posed more problems than Brixham the previous day and in defence they missed very few tackles.

The opportunity was taken to give debuts to Colts' flanker Stuart Bickerstaff, whose powerful running was a feature, and Australian Ben Damen, who replaced Jamie Wardrop at full back in the second half.

Also Tim Phipps made his first appearance of the season since suffering concussion in August.

From the kick-off, the Chiefs retained possession through several phases for a minute and a half until the Crediton defence had been dragged out of position and Dan Retter exploited a huge gap to score under the posts. He converted his own try.

A few minutes later, hooker Ollie Derryman had to leave the field with a neck injury. However, the Chiefs continued to dominate and, when Steve Trim broke from the base of a scrum, he found Andy Matchett in support. The wingman was stopped just short of the line but, when the ball emerged from the resulting ruck, Stuart Bickerstaff forced his way over in the corner despite the attentions of two defenders. The try was unconverted.

Not for the first time this season, the Chiefs fell foul of the referee's interpretation at the breakdown. A series of penalties eased the pressure on Crediton and allowed them to develop some momentum.

A penalty kicked by the full back brought them into the game. A few minutes later, it was against the run of play that Sidmouth scored their next try. A dropped ball by the Crediton backs was hacked on into the 22 and Harry Chesterton won the chase to dribble over and touch down for a try which was converted by Retter.

Crediton replied on the half hour with a similar effort when a kick ahead bounced in their favour and the full back won the chase to score an unconverted try in the left corner. With conditions under foot deteriorating rapidly, the game became scrappy and the score remained 19-8 at halftime.

Derryman's condition had not improved by this time so it was decided to send him to hospital as a precaution and the air ambulance provided the necessary transport with a resultant delay to the restart. I am pleased to report that the injury did not turn out to be serious and he was discharged after treatment.

With conditions proving to be a good leveller, the second half was a fairly even contest in which Sidmouth's superior finishing power added two more tries.

The try of the match came in the twelfth minute from a movement which started inside the Sidmouth half. The ball was moved across the back line to Ashley Cooper who made ground down the left touchline to the Crediton 22 where the ball was switched to the right. It was transferred smoothly through six pairs of hands to Simeon Lewry on the right wing and he dived over in the corner.

In the 35th minute, a long period of pressure ended with Andy Matchett strolling over unopposed in the left corner. Both tries were unconverted.

The Chiefs will now travel to Cullompton for the quarter-final on a date yet to be decided. Cullompton are having an excellent season as runaway leaders of Western Counties West and might be considered favourites on their own ground having beaten the Chiefs in a cup game last season.

By Terry O'Brien

Sidmouth 1st XV 29pts, Crediton 1st XV 8pts


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