Sidmouth Chiefs chalk up third successive bonus point victory before another big home crowd
- Credit: Archant
Sidmouth Chiefs continued their rise up the league table with a 32-9 win over Newton Abbot, writes Terry O’Brien.
This, a third consecutive bonus point victory, was achieved in front of a good crowd, including 90 ex-players attending their annual lunch.
The damp conditions were not ideal for open rugby but both sides produced some good handling moves between the inevitable kicking battle for territory.
The Chiefs third and fourth tries resulted from moves of notable quality.
Most of the first half hour was played out in the Newton Abbot half with the Sidmouth pack in control as they built up a comfortable lead.
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Dan Retter opened the scoring with a penalty kicked in the fourth minute.
The first try came midway through the half, when the forwards set a maul from a line out and drove deep into the visitors 22, sucking in defenders.
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When the ball was released to the outsides, Tom Seaward joined the line between the centres and burst through to touch down under the posts. Dan Retter kicked the routine conversion.
A turnover on halfway saw the ball reach the hands of Franck Friconnet and the prop embarked on a rampaging run, which left three would-be tacklers in his wake on the way to the line. This time the successful conversion from the touchline was far from routine.
The third try on the half hour was the product of a slick handling move down the left with Tom Hodge and Sam Meadham making ground before Zack Bess left two players in his wake on the way to the line. Again, the try was converted.
Newton Abbot went on the offensive in the closing stages of the half and were eventually rewarded with a penalty kicked by their captain to make the half time score 24-3.
The visitors opened the second half with an excellent move initiated by a break from the scrum half. They eventually crossed the line from a ruck deep inside the 22, but the score was ruled out as the ball had gone forward. However, they were awarded a penalty for an offence at the ruck committed by Zac Bess, who was shown the yellow card.
The pressure was eventually rewarded with a successful penalty.
Newton Abbot continued to enjoy territorial advantage during the third quarter and increased their score with a third penalty.
The Chiefs regained the initiative with an excellent try as the ball was progressed through several phases before it was moved smoothly along the backline for Luke Wells-Burr to sprint over in the right corner for an unconverted try.
With the Chiefs remaining in control, Dan Retter completed the scoring with a penalty two minutes from time.
The senior teams enjoy a rest on Saturday to concentrate on England's attempt to win the World Cup. The match will be shown on the big screen at the club, which will open at 8am with a pre-match breakfast being available.
The colts travel to Torquay.