Regional 2 Tribute South West: Cullompton 33-12 Chard

CHARD have had four very close encounters prior to this match but in this one, they rarely looked like scoring until late on in the second half when effectively the points were already in the bag for a more than useful home side, writes Glyn Hughes.

Cullompton won promotion last season and their good form has continued in this division.

The hosts won the toss and elected to play up the slight slope in the first half but with the benefit of a very strong wind and they certainly knew how to use the conditions to their advantage.

Chard defended very well for the first 30 minutes, but they then conceded two tries both of which were converted. They were guilty of losing concentration after conceding penalties and Cullompton were able to gain a lot of ground by taking the penalties very quickly which directly set up their two tries.

Chard had had several chances to score themselves but the cutting edge in the backs that has been evident so far this season deserted them and Cullompton led 14 nil at the break.

Chard was still well in the game and were hoping that the wind would help them in the second half, but it was definitely easing somewhat!

A yellow card at the end if the first half and another at the beginning of the second period did not help their cause and Cullompton added two more tries to claim a try bonus point and with one of these being converted now led 26-0

Some sides would have capitulated at this point, but Chard started to play some good rugby and with Nial Crouch gaining ground with some astute kicking Chard went over for their first try with hooker Joe Mainwaring getting the touch down.

Crouch added the extras and almost immediately they narrowed the gap again when skipper Luke Aplin scored try number two. Crouch narrowly missed the conversion but Chard were back in the game and with time running out they worked hard to get a third try which would have put then in line for a losing bonus point but some ineffective tackling allowed Cullompton to score again right on the final whistle to finish worthy winners by 33-12.

Despite the loss Chard didn’t play that badly and Dean Richards in the forwards had a very good game as did prop Dave Biss.

There are no scheduled league matches next Saturday and Chard will be looking forward to hopefully getting back to winning ways when they entertain Newton Abbot on Saturday 14th October at 3pm.