Regional 2 Tribute Southwest: Wellington RFC 27-22 Chard RFC

THIS was the fourth occasion this season that Chard have somehow failed to hold on for a win by conceding points in the last few minutes of a game with this result being particularly disappointing for the players and large number of supporters who had travelled to Wellington, writes Glyn Hughes.

They really should have won this game especially after such a strong performance in the first half when they looked by far the better side. In the second half however, they were guilty of unforced errors, poor game management and were also against a rejuvenated home team.

Chard started well and took the lead when they turned down the chance of kicking a straightforward penalty and went for the try which was duly scored by number eight Jack Elliot and converted from wide out by Niall Crouch.0- 7

Despite having to make several changes for the game Chard were playing well and the home forwards were under the cosh and looked vulnerable especially defensively. It was no surprise when Elliot went over for his second score after the home pack were shoved back over their own line. The try was unconverted. 0-12

Wellington got back into the game when some of their strong running backs broke through some mistimed Chard tackles and scored under the posts 7-12

Chard increased their lead when right on the half time whistle Ross Colenso made a lovely break for Chard’s 3rd try which was converted by Crouch to give them a 7-19 lead at the interval.

With the slope now in their favour there were high hopes that not only would Chard hopefully go on to win but also get five pts if they could score another try which would be a huge boost to their battle to stay in this division.

However, Wellington upped their game and were aided by some poor kicking by several Chard players with the ball all too often not finding touch or space which in turn gave the hosts the opportunity to counterattack. Initially Wellington reduced the arrears with a penalty before then making the most of a wayward kick to score under the posts. With the conversion good Chard’s lead was now a mere 2pts.  17-19

There were only minutes to go but, in that time, Chard missed two kickable penalties, Wellington went ahead by one point when they converted a penalty and then scored a terrific try after some fine handling by their backs. With the score now 27-19 in Wellingtons favour it looked as if Chard would now get no points at all but straight from the kick off they got close to the try line and were awarded a penalty which Crouch converted to gain Chard a solitary bonus point for being within 7pts of the winners.

A great game for any neutral supporters in the big crowd but another disappointment for Chard especially after being in the lead for 90% of the match.

Despite the loss Chard again could not be faulted for effort and commitment and they will certainly be up for the fight to get away from the relegation positions in the new year,

Chard don’t play again until they travel to Crediton on 6th January.

The postponed match against Burnham has been re arranged for Saturday 20th January.