Bideford 14-26 Chard

AFTER five defeats Chard got back to winning ways with a well deserved win in North Devon, writes Glyn Hughes.

It is worth noting that Chard could arguably have won four of these games but did not do so because of a number of elementary errors, but in this game they tightened things up considerably and their defensive play in the final ten minutes was top drawer.

Having won their home game against Bideford earlier in the season by 51-7 Chard were favourites to win but all teams are so much stronger at home in this division and previous results don’t mean a lot as Chard have found out in recent weeks!

Chard played with a strong wind in their favour and dominated the early stages . They went ahead after five minutes when skipper Luke Aplin forced his way over. Niall Crouch added the extras with a lovely strike from way out.

Chard did not make many mistakes in the game but paid the price for failing to deal with a hopeful kick down field. There was plenty of time to clear the ball but somehow they were caught in possession and from the resultant play the home team got on the board with an unconverted try from Harry Jones.

Chard were having most of the play and increased their lead when centre Ben Fenton who had good game throughout broke through and scored under the posts. Crouch converted taking Chard’s lead to 5-14.

Bideford got on the scoreboard again with a penalty from Reece Pearn when Chard were deemed to be guilty of a crossing offence to make the score 8-14.

Chard remained on top for the rest of the half but despite a lot of good play they were unable to add to their score before the break.

In the second half Bideford levelled things up with two monster penalty kicks with Pearne and Mark Lee getting one each.

At 14-14 Chard might have lost heart but they did not and special mention goes to Reid Mawdsley, Billy Vernon and in fact the whole team for a really positive and spirited performance.

Even against a really gusty wind Chard took the game to Bideford and Ryan Helliar scored their 3rd try after 67 minutes which Crouch again converted with a super kick .

Within minutes Chard had got a bonus point when their strong and aggressive forwards set up an opportunity for Ross Colenso to get the fourth try.

Crouch nearly made it a perfect afternoon from the tee but his effort from the touchline hit the upright and the score was 14-26.

After several away games Chard return to action at home against local rivals Honiton next Saturday with the game kicking off at 2.30pm.