Western Counties West

Chard 24, Sidmouth 27

A LAST-MINUTE try from Adam Moore gave Chard two points that they thoroughly deserved against Sidmouth, but the home side will be ruing the mistakes which gifted the league leaders a couple of tries earlier in the game, writes Glyn Hughes.

A well-refereed game was very evenly contested throughout, with Chard taking an early lead through an unconverted try from Billy Biss, who forced his way over straight from the kick-off.

But the hosts were again guilty of giving too many penalties away, and Dan Retter kicked the first one within range to reduce the deficit.

Sidmouth had a 10-minute spell when they were right on top, but the Chard tackling was excellent and, despite being pinned back in their own 22, they managed to keep the visitors out.

However, after 20 minutes, a missed tackle in midfield set up a try for James Powell, converted by Retter to make the score 10-5.

Chard came back strongly and spurned an easy penalty attempt, electing to take a scrummage instead.

They won the ball well and drove Sidmouth back at a rate of knots before getting the ball out to Biss, who went over for his second try of the game.

Niall Crouch converted and Chard led 12-10.

But then a misdirected kick downfield gave Sidmouth full-back Sam Meadham time to counter-attack and, aided by several missed tackles in midfield, he offloaded to wing Luke Wells Burr for an unconverted score.

Five minutes into first-half injury time, another breakaway from deep by Sidmouth resulted in a try for centre Powell, and they led 20-12 at the break.

Crouch ghosted down the blindside to score an early try for Chard in the second half, which brought the hosts to within three points.

Chard were now on top but gifted Wells Burr an interception deep in his own half, and with the Chard players all in attacking positions he took full advantage, running the length of the field to score a bonus-point try for the visitors, converted by Retter.

Chard had several penalties in the dying minutes which would have given them a losing bonus point, but chose to take the scrum option in order to get a try bonus point as well.

This decision eventually paid off, with the last-minute try by Moore.

That ended a very entertaining game to watch for the crowd of more than 150, but it was the third game this season that Chard had scored four tries without winning.

If they can cut down the number of mistakes, the next win will soon come, but they have taken nine points from their last three games, which shows the importance of getting the bonus points on offer.

Chard: E Szdelko, R Collenso, B Brooks, C Roberts, B Biss, N Crouch, R Helliar, D Biss, J Mainwaring, L Hill, A Moore, M Gosden, M Tinley, J Wright, S Johnson, A Bromfield, W Lewis.

Somerset 2 South

Chard 2nds 66, Minehead Barbs 2nds 8

CHARD and Minehead’s 2nd XVs played at Crewkerne Road in front of a surprisingly large crowd on Saturday, and the home supporters were not disappointed in the performance put in by their team.

With barely a minute on the clock, Chard were pressuring the visitors’ line and from a lineout the ball was sent out to number 10 Sam Mouland, who jinked through for the opening try under the posts - Ieuan Watkins got his first of nine conversions of the day.

Minehead came back from the restart and were awarded a kickable penalty, opening their account to make the score 7-3.

Harry Cleal was next to cross the line for the hosts from a quick tap penalty, catching the defence off guard, and minutes later Ben Partridge got on the scoresheet, making it 19-3 at half time.

With replacements coming on at half time, Joel Nicholls and Zak Stabbins entering the fray, Minehead’s restart went to the hands of Cleal, who took the opportunity to score his second of the day, with Max Mainwaring scoring six minutes later to make it 31-3.

Next over the line was Nick Lester, with Watkins on target with the boot again, before he went over himself with a converted try for 45-3.

Chard had to work for nearly 10 minutes before scoring again, this time Ash Wilson-Briant getting the try, from the restart they worked the ball along the line and Mainwaring bagged his second.

Cleal scored his hat-trick on 73 minutes and, not to be outdone, Mainwaring got Chard’s final try and his own hat-trick minutes later.

Minehead snuck in a forwards try at the end of the game, something Chard will be disappointed about, but the final score really does tell the story of the game.

Chard: Joel Nicholls, Ben Partridge, Ben Lock, Connor Moon, Brian Sugar (c), Nick Mouland, Callum Young, Tom Spurway, Tim Gibbs, Sam Mouland, Harry Cleal, Matt Dunn, Nick Lester, Ieuan Watkins, Dan Potter, Max Mainwaring, Gavin Smillie, Jordon Beale, Zak Stabbins, Ash Wilson-Briant.