Western Counties West
St Austell 59, Chard 17

CHARD made the long trip to Cornwall to play leaders St Austell, and despite travelling with a really strong side they found the home side in great form, writes Glyn Hughes.

Chard coach Jon Hendy commented afterwards that, on this display, they were certainly the best all-round side his team had faced all season.

With previous leaders Wellington surprisingly being beaten at Tiverton, St Austell now look the most likely team to take the automatic promotion spot.

The visitors started very well, as a well-directed cross kick from fly-half Ben Thomas was cleanly taken by wing Emile Szydelko, who raced over for the opening score.

Paul Nicholls converted, and then increased his side’s advantage to 10 points with a well-struck penalty.

These early scores for Chard galvanised the home team into action, however, and two penalty kicks to the corner enabled their strong forwards to score twice from catch and drive moves.

The St Austell backs then demonstrated their handling skills which, when combined with real pace, put Chard to the sword with three more tries and a 33-10 lead at half-time

Chard also had to contend with a really strong wind in the second half, keeping them pinned back in their own half for quite long periods.

St Austell added a further 26 points in the second half but Chard could not be faulted for effort.

The visitors had the final say when Ross Colenso finished off a fine team move to score a second converted try.

Chard squad: Aplin, Robinson, Biss, Tinley (c), Moore, Wright, Helliar, Riley, Nicholls, Thomas, Brooks, Crouch, Szydelko, Colenso, Roberts, Hendy, Gosden, Badcock.

Chard have a break from league rugby this coming Saturday, returning to action with a home fixture against Teignmouth on March 21.

Somerset 2 South
Yeovil II 0, Chard II 36

CHARD’S 2nd XV made the short trip to Yeovil on Saturday, and came away with a resounding victory that avenges their 27-10 defeat in November’s reverse fixture, writes Gavin Smillie.

The visitors were missing some regulars, and the first half started with the wind in Yeovil’s favour, but Chard were winning the breakdowns and squandered three scoring chances close to the line.

Eventually Joel Nicholls got the first score, making it 5-0 at half-time.

The second half was a different story, with Chard truly on song.

Will Draper and Sam Mouland were in influential form, allowing Bill Biss the opportunity to smash holes in the home defence, supported closely by Jamie Prior, who was clinical in scoring three of six tries.

Warren Lewis also went over from the base of a scrum, and Matt Coombes raced in from his own half.

Mouland’s boot added six points to the tally, in what was a confident and clinical team performance.

Chard's next match sees them host Tor 2nds on March 21.