Wellington 34 – Penryn 21
Wellington welcomed Cornwall’s oldest rugby club to the Athletic Field hoping to reverse their fortunes after the last couple of weeks.They took to the field with a much changed front row with Lee Wadham and Ricki Waygood stepping up from the Seconds together with Anthony Gill out behind.
Early exchanges went the home side’s way with a Mark Nichols penalty coming back off the upright in the third minute. Soon however the Borough began to exert some pressure to test the home defence. Numerous penalties were awarded against the hosts and after fifteen minutes a catch and drive from a lineout was grounded by number eight Grant Randlesome with the conversion being kicked by Alex Ducker.
The Red and Blacks increased their efforts and were back on terms quickly when Captain Lloyd Willcocks charged over as they kept the ball alive with quick rucking to stretch the visitors defence with Mark Nichols converting.
The rest of the half became was fiercely contested and pretty even until just before the break when Nichols stepped up to slot a penalty to give the home side the advantage at the break.
The half time talk saw an improved level of play from the Chiefs immediately as they resolved to continue with their plan to keep the ball moving as quickly as possible with quick recycling at rucks and mauls. Nichols had the misfortune to see another penalty rebound off a post.
These tactics paid off shortly into the half when second row Micky Norman went over from close range for an unconverted try as the side patiently kept possession to stretch their visitors to the limit.
Following another strong attack by the home side the Cornishmen got back into the match however as they took a quick tap penalty and set off down the left where Wellington numbers were short which allowed Captain Jordan Rose to round off the swift move with the conversion being completed by Ducker to reduce the margin to just one point.
The home side responded with a Robin Trott break as he snaked through on the right to score with Nichols converting.
There was still work to be done as the visitors continued to push forward but Wellington went further ahead after more swift movement which undid the visitors as Willcocks set up another dangerous position as he took off from the base of a scrum at which they were under pressure. He set up centre Robin Trott who made the room to offload to Nichols who was up quickly in support and he rounded the defence to score near the posts but wasn’t able to convert.
The visitors still harboured hopes of getting back into the match and were back in it when Ducker collected a high ball in his twenty two and set off on a mazy run beating all comers, including the usually faultless Nichols, side stepping and swerving through to the line with Ollie Evans converting.
They saw their bonus point disappear as they conceded a late last score when the introduction of Dave Sims saw him take a line out ball and organise a twenty metre drive to the line for Dan Moore to score with Nichols just making the conversion.
R Waygood, J Dyke, L Wadham, M Norman, T Buller, L Willcocks, S Bellamy, C Kitto, M Ranson, W McKegney, A Gill, T Sargent, R Trott, M Taylor, M Nichols. Replacments: D Moore, H Cole, D Sims.
Report & Photos: Paul Waygood
Courtesy of WRFC