Seasiders complete double over Mouth
By Pete Sloman
Match report courtesy of Tony Russell
This was an eagerly awaited match between closest rivals. Weston had won on their own ground back in September but a fierce contest was anticipated on Avonmouths heavy pitch. ..It didn’t happen!
The visitors scored seven tries as the hosts, who have begun to climb away from the relegation zone following four recent wins after losing their first eight games in National 3, found the going somewhat tough.
The proverbial game of “two halves” ensued, with a competitive first forty minutes, and a second half which was all about Weston.
The home side took the lead after eight minutes with a penalty from full back Wearne, an emigre from the Barnstaple Club who had already missed an easier opportunity as the visitors fell foul of the referees’ whistle following elementary mistakes, and it was Avonmouth who looked the more lively as Weston inexplicably tried to play running rugby from all parts of the heavy pitch in an attempt to run out the rustiness brought about by three weeks inactivity. However after nineteen minutes their enterprise was rewarded as full back Bennett crossed following good work from Oupuh and Smee. The conversion was missed and the “Mouth” retook the lead with Wearnes’ second penalty after 33 minutes, having butchered a gold plated try opportunity when left wing Reynolds knocked on with no one in front of him, but Weston responded two minutes later when Sparks touched down following a forward drive to the line for a 10-6 lead. Mackay added two penalties just before half time to increase the lead to 16-6.
Weston took immediate control in the second half. The forwards once again drove for the line after two minutes with second row Russell getting the touchdown under the posts for Mackay to convert, and ten minutes later, Edwards streaked down the narrow side to cross from 25 metres for Mackay to once again convert for a 30-6 scoreline and the four try bonus point safely bagged.
On the hour, referee Doug Neagle despatched a player from either side to the sin bin as Westons’ strength took its’ toll on the home forwards who started to flag noticeably as tempers flared, and Sparks picked up his second try, a simple pushover, a minute later.
Avonmouth scored a consolation corner try through replacement Hamilton to reduce the arrears to 35-11. Mackay kicked his third penalty, and as the hosts ran out of steam, with gaps appearing everywhere, Weston ran in two further tries from deep in their own territory from replacement wingman Arnold, and a second from Edwards. Mackay converted one to bring up the half century.
The long awaited return of forward Andrew Glen to the side was unfortunately limited to 15 minutes playing time. Having come on as a replacement for Harry Somers, he was involved in an accidental clash of heads which necessitated his departure.
Weston team….Bennett, Watkins, Smee, Edwards, Oupuh, Mackay, Waldon,
Swann, Burge (c), Hobbs P. Somers, Russell, Eaton, Morrissey,
Sparks. Relacements (all used)…Glen, Arnold, Donegan.