Wellington pay dearly for poor start

By A Reporter   |   IOM Reporter   |
Friday 1st April 2022 4:00 pm
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WELLINGTON 29

LYDNEY 36

THIS South West One (W) match enthralled the sizeable crowd from the first minute to the last, writes Allyn Chetland.

A fast start for Lydney or a slow start from the Chiefs saw the visitors race into an early lead via two converted tries and, for many, this might have suggested the writing was on the wall for the Chiefs.

However, the squad had other ideas and went on to produce some outstanding rugby.

Playing with pace, continuity and guile, Lydney were rocked by the Chiefs’ response and had to work extremely hard to contain opponents who were growing in confidence as the half progressed.

An outstanding backs move saw Alex Davey enter the line at pace and round Lydney’s fullback with ease to score underneath the posts, Davey making no mistake with the conversion.

Further pressure from the Chiefs ensued, stretching Lydney’s defence, and these efforts were rewarded when Chris Kitto powered over for an unconverted try following a well organised driving lineout.

Stung by this score, Lydney replied with an unconverted try on the stroke of half-time to lead 19pts-12 going into the break.

The second half was just as entertaining with both sides playing some excellent rugby.

Following early pressure from the Chiefs, Martin Walker bulldozed his way over for a close range unconverted try to reduce Lydney’s lead to two points.

Momentum was now with the Chiefs but it was the visitors who scored next via a converted try which was, followed soon after by a penalty, as Lydney looked to take the sting out of the game.

The Chiefs’ response was immediate when winger Finn Pocock, playing his first game for a number of months, crossed for an unconverted try following an excellent attack.

The Chiefs continued to look for further tries which would give them the lead, but again it was Lydney who extended their lead further with another converted try.

This setback did not dampen the Chiefs’ spirits and they continued to press.

George Hodgson scored the try of the match when he danced his way over from 45 metres out and Davey converted to reduce Lydney’s lead to seven points.

Despite further efforts, the Chiefs could not trouble the scoreboard further and this highly entertaining and competitive match finished in a Lydney victory.

The Chiefs will rue the 14 points conceded in the opening five minutes which ultimately decided the outcome of the match but the way the squad responded to this early setback drew enormous praise in the clubhouse afterwards from the opposition, officials and the club faithful. The whole of the squad made immense contributions throughout with prop Callum Warren grabbing much praise in anchoring the Chiefs’ scrum against vastly more experienced opponents.

Captain for the day, George Hodgson, led by example and had a fine game throughout.

Wellington: Richards, Phillips, Warren, Redwood, Walker, Kitto, Dyer, Hinchcliffe, Howe, Hodgson (W), Brewer, Hodgson (G), Harney, Goldstone, Batts, Pocock, Davey, Price.

A minute’s silence was observed before kick-off for ex-Wellington players Paul Smith and Dave Sims – all our thoughts and prayers are with both families at this sad time.

Tomorrow, the Chiefs travel up the M5 to take on Thornbury while the 2nd XV entertain their counterparts from Morganians. Kick-offs are expected to be 3pm.

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