Regional Two South West: Chard 27-30 Wellington

CHARD lost their opening home match of the season with the last play of the game against Wadebridge and unbelievably exactly the same thing happened in this encounter.

Chard had gone ahead with just a few minutes to go and even though they made a bit of a hash of the re start their forwards won the ball against the head from a scrum which then just needed to be cleared into touch. The inexperienced but talented young Chard backs who have massive potential were caught in two minds, lost possession and Wellington did what they had done throughout with a  swift counterattack leading to a try in the corner to clinch victory.

In many ways it was the story of the game with Wellington scoring tries from situations created from basic errors.

With Niall Crouch not available for this match the kicking duties were taken on by Emile Szydelko and he made no mistake with two early penalties to put Chard 6 pts clear.

The Chard pack with Dave Biss and Matt Tinley outstanding had the edge on Wellington in the set piece but the visitors had some quick backs who were quick to switch from defence to attack whenever an opportunity arose, and Wellington took the lead with a converted try.

Szydelko put Chard ahead again with another well struck penalty but Chard’s vulnerability from restarts was punished immediately when a mistake gave Wellington a penalty opportunity which was duly taken.

Szydelko was kicking as well as he has ever done and put Chard 15-10 ahead with two more great efforts. However, from the second restart Wellington won a penalty and a quick tap caught Chard unawares and Wellington scored an opportunist try in the corner to bring the scores level at 15-15 at the interval.

Early in the second period Chard lost a player to the bin and a few missed kicks to touch allowed Wellington to pull away with a penalty and a converted try.

However, a spirited performance by Chard led to late tries from Biss and Tinley with Szydelko converting one and hitting the upright from the touchline with his other attempt.   

Chard now held a  two-point advantage at 27-25 with only seconds to go but the game was not over and Wellington responded immediately to get the win.

Despite the defeat plenty of encouraging aspects can be taken from Chard’s performance  but at this level unforced errors are usually punished, and certainly game management needs to be improved as arguably Chard should probably have won all three of their games to date.

Chard has a real test next Saturday when they are at home to Crediton which kicks off at 3pm.