Western Counties (W)

Saltash 13, Chard 24

MOTHER nature decided to grace the South West with persistent rain and hail from the early hours of Saturday morning but Chard were undeterred as they crossed the Cornish border to Saltash, writes Zoe Winslow.

A rousing speech from coach Jon Hendy in the changing rooms translated well on the pitch as Chard's defence was well organised.

A well placed penalty kick from Charlie Roberts gave Chard their first opportunity to score with a line out near the Saltash 5m line, from which relentless drives ended in Ryan Helliar crashing over the line for the first try of the game, neatly converted by Niall Crouch.

Saltash attacked well through their backs, and full-back Ryan Cruickshanks chased down a kicked ball to score a try which was disallowed due to a knock on.

Despite their best efforts, Saltash were unable to break through Chard defence in the early stages, with Billy Brooks and Jason Wright standing out in their tackling efforts.

On 24 minutes, Chard's impressive scrum drove over the line which and Paul Nicholls touched down; another fine Crouch conversion brought the score up to 14-0.

Chard then lost George Russo to a dead arm following a brilliant tackle and Saltash got themselves on the scoreboard before half-time courtesy of an unconverted try from flanker Lewis Wells.

By now, the pitch was a mudbath and the second half started with Saltash moving the ball quickly down the back line.

Chard defended well, most notably Charlie Roberts delivering an earth shattering tackle from which the recipient did well to bounce back.

A penalty for a high tackle saw the hosts cut the deficit to 14-8 from Todd Crofts' kick.

Good runs from Roberts and Joe Mainwaring forced mistakes from Saltash, and Chard's scrums really came into play.

It was from the scrum that Chard scored their next try, a pushover, with the ball jumped on by scrum-half Nicholls, bringing the score to 19-8.

With 10 minutes to go, a Chard maul crossed the try line but the visitors were held up when Saltash defence came in from all angles.

Chard then scrummaged hard, walking it over the try line, and Helliar touched down to make the score 24-8.

With four minutes left, a nice drive from the home team ended in Wells running in a try which went unconverted.

The scoreboard didn't change from this point, and the match ended 24-13 to Chard.

The win stretched Chard's unbeaten run to seven, a streak they are looking to continue when they host league leaders St Austell this Saturday.

Tribute Somerset 2S
Morganians 33, Chard 2nd XV 10

CHARD travelled to Bridgwater to play top-of-the-table Morganians with only six points between them.

Chard advanced well at first but unforced errors put them under pressure and it wasn’t long before Morganians capitalised and opened the scoring followed by a second try soon after. 

Chard did get on the scoresheet through a determined effort from Luke Hill with the extras added by Ieuan Watkins but Morganians where soon to score again.

The visitors struggled to get a foothold in the game with the only other points coming from the boot of Watkins.

Individuals from Chard had good games but, on the day, Morganians played well and deserved the win.

Chard remain second in the table and will regroup as they welcome mid-table Yeovil II next week.