Sidmouth’s powerful start sees them to victory over Thornbury
- Credit: Archant
Sidmouth 43, Thornbury 26 The visitors were the better side for the final 55 minutes, but the contest was won by Sidmouth thanks to their scintillating performance in the first 25 minutes.
In that opening period the rampant Chiefs notched up 35 unanswered points to provide an unassailable lead before their defence got a severe testing. In the end they had to be thankful for some fine goal-kicking and a couple of important try-saving tackles!
In the third minute a Thornbury player dropped the ball and Alva Senderayi hacked on from his own 10 metre line and followed up to gather the ball and dive over in the left corner. Glenn Channing converted from the touchline.
Senderayi was in the action again minutes later, when he took a quick tap penalty and sent Jason luff on a jinking run. He was brought down just short of the line and, when the ball was quickly recycled, Jack Pyne powered his way over for try number two. Dan Retter added the conversion.
On the quarter hour Dan Trim latched onto the rebound from a charged down kick and burst deep into the Thorbury 22, where Glenn Channing exploited the unmarked blindside of a ruck to dive over in the right corner. Dan Retter converted from a narrow angle.
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The bonus point fourth try came minutes later, when Tristan Beavis sprinted through a gap in the centre to touch down under the post, giving Retter and easy conversion kick.
Jack Pyne scored his second try when he peeled off from a lineout maul and left three defenders in his wake. Dan Retter made it four successful kicks out of four.
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Thornbury eventually shook off the journey to dominate the closing minutes of the half and score two converted tries. Following quick possession from a lineout inside the Sidmouth 22, the left winger took an inside pass to wrong foot the defence and score near the posts. Then, in injury time, they were awarded a penalty try following a five metre scrum to make the halftime score 35-14.
The visitors were back on the attack straight from the restart kick, but the Chiefs turned over possession at a ruck near their own line and James Perry burst up field to put his side on the attack. After some good approach work by the forwards, the ball was released to the backs. Jason Luff joined the line to make ground before timing his pass perfectly to send Ben Dobson in at the right corner. Dan Retter narrowly missed the conversion, but minutes later kicked a penalty.
Any thoughts that Thornbury would cave in were quickly dispelled when they scored a converted try from a fine handling move following a quick tap penalty.
With half an hour still to play, the result was far from settled as Thornbury pilled the pressure on in the Sidmouth 22. The fly half looked certain to score near the posts when he broke clear with just Scott Davies between him and the line. The replacement full back brought off a superb tackle to prevent a certain seven points. Minutes later the lively scrum half was held up over the line.
Eventually, with five minutes to go, the pressure was rewarded when a long pass gave the outside centre space to go over for an unconverted try. The Chiefs played out the remaining time comfortably for an important win.
On Saturday the Chiefs travel to play Old Redcliffians, who have displaced North Petherton at the top of the table.
At the Blackmore, the Quins entertain Barnstaple 2nds kicking off at 3.00pm.
At Sidford the Colts play a decisive Merit Table game against Okehampton, who are also undefeated. The kick off is at 3pm.