Western Counties (W)

Chard 15, Falmouth 20

Chard were left to rue the number of penalties they conceded in this close game against Falmouth - not to mention some ill disciplined play that frustrated coach Jon Hendy, writes Liam Mustchin.

Chard made a bit of a hash of the kick-off but, despite being under pressure, defended well and Falmouth were unable to take advantage.

After ten minutes, Chard had Luke Aplin sent to the bin for apparently collapsing a maul.

Initially, being down a player did not affect Chard but eventually they conceded a try with Joe Martin getting the touchdown for an unconverted effort.

Chard then lost another player to the bin when Emile Szydelko was guilty of a high tackle and Martin soon went over for another unconverted score.

Chard got back into the game strongly and, after strong play by the forwards, the ball went to player-coach Ben Thomas who spotted a gap and squeezed over in the corner.

The try was unconverted but Chard were now on the scoreboard.

With half time approaching, Chard gained a lot of territory and, following a kick to the corner, Falmouth collapsed a maul several times and the referee had no hesitation in awarding a penalty try which made the score 15-12 in Falmouth's favour at the break.

The hosts started the second half well and a penalty goal from the boot of Paul Nicholls brought the scores level.

The game was somewhat over competitive at times and it was no surprise when Chard's Dave Biss and Falmouth's Matt Horton were asked to spend ten minutes each in the bin.

Falmouth missed a relatively easy penalty which would have put them in front but, shortly afterwards with the game drawing to a close, an unconverted try from Colin Campbell gave Falmouth the lead and a try bonus point.

With seconds to go, Chard thought they had won the game when a cross field kick from Ethan Babcock found Thomas, who fed Ben Stead to steam in under the posts.

Unfortunately for Chard, the referee adjudged Thomas to have been in front of the kicker and the score was disallowed.

Falmouth deserved to win the game, however, and looked a lot stronger than they had in the reverse fixture.

Chard can have no real complaints, with some watching of the view that this was Chard's worst home performance of the season.

Chard have a break from league action next weekend when they entertain Combe Down in a cup match (2.30pm).

Somerset 2 (S)
Chard 2nd XV 8, Castle Cary 0

Chard's second team made it three straight wins with a hard-fought success over Castle Cary. 

Chard started the first half well, keeping Cary pinned in their own half. 

With ferocious tackling and good use of the space with ball in hand the pressure on Cary finally gave in and Chard were awarded a series of penalties.

Sam Mouland found touch and the resulting line-out was won by the Chard pack five metres from the try line, who forced their way over the line with Ben Partridge and Arron Lewis combining to get the score and put Chard 5-0 up.

Chard had many more chances in the first half but Cary's defence held.

Cary had a disallowed try in the first half with the referee deeming the ball to have travelled beyond the pitch, a let off for the hosts. 

The second half was more even, with Mouland slotting a penalty to take the lead to 8-0. 

Openside flanker Callum Young took a knee to the back of the head, resulting in being knocked unconscious - Ross Fanyinka stepped into the flank and centre Matt Dunn came on to fill the void. 

Cary were starting to really pile on the pressure on to Chard and the last 20 minutes of the game was played in the hosts' 22. 

A yellow card was shown to prop Ben Lock for repeat team infringements, meaning Chard had to defend for the last 10 minutes with 14 men. 

Some valiant defending from full-back Gavin Watts made sure Chard kept a clean sheet. 

Man of the match Warren Lewis rounded off a brilliant defensive performance from the whole team with a turnover close to the Chard line and the referee called time. 

Next up for Chard is a trip to Somerton on February 1.