Hodge returns with hat-trick of tries as Sidmouth continue fine start

Sidmouth rugby player

Fine run - Credit: Sidmouth RFC

Sidmouth Quins continued their impressive start since being promoted to Devon Merit Table One with a comfortable win against Tiverton 2nds. Following this impressive performance, they lie in fifth place with games in hand over the teams above them.

Tiverton kicked off in perfect conditions and were immediately on the attack when Sidmouth failed to gather the ball cleanly. The home defence survived the early test until they turned over possession and cleared the ball up field.

The Quins took the lead after 12 minutes with a well-worked try. The forwards set up a driving maul from a lineout just inside the opposing 22 and gained 10 metres before releasing the ball to Tom Hodge to finish off a move on the blindside. The try was unconverted.

Midway through the half, they extended their lead with an excellent handling move which went to the left before switching back right for Tom Woodruff to touch down in the corner. Again, the conversion attempt was unsuccessful.

When the forwards turned over possession from a ruck just inside their own half, the ball was moved swiftly to the left. Hodge, making his first appearance since the Covid break, burst through two tackles on a 50 metre run to the line. Adam Squance added the conversion.

Tiverton finished the half strongly but could not find a way through the well-marshalled Sidmouth defence.

Soon after the restart, Squance extended the lead with a well-struck penalty.

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Hodge completed a hattrick of tries when he took an inside pass from Dan Rugg to finish off a handling move started inside the Sidmouth half. Squance kicked the conversion.

Connor Preston capped an impressive performance at hooker when he finished off another handling move involving many pairs of hands from deep inside the Sidmouth half.

Tiverton scored a well-deserved consolation try when the fly half put in a well-judged grubber kick and the outside centre won the chase for the touchdown.

On Saturday the Chiefs entertain Thornbury at the Blackmore Field kicking off at 2.30pm.

The Quins travel to play Exeter Athletic 2nds.

The Colts are away at Okehampton.

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