Hornets humiliated in top of the table clash
THE top of the table battle between these two sides turned into a one-way humiliation of league leader Hornets, as Chard ran out 88-7 winners.
THE top of the table battle between these two sides turned into a one-way humiliation of league leaders Hornets, as Chard ran out 88-7 winners.
The tempo of the match was set in the first three minutes when it was difficult to remember Hornets touching the ball. Chard attacked with multiple phases, contested strongly in the contact area and put width on the ball whenever they could.
It was no surprise when Chard winger George Herbert brushed aside weak tackling from Hornets to score the first try which was duly converted by Paul Nichols.
Chard scored their next try after 14 minutes when they pulled in the Hornets winger and Lucas Bennett scored in the left hand corner. Left-footed Nichols kicked a superb conversion.
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After 20 minutes Hornets got close enough to start a catch and drive only for Chard to be penalised. The throw in from the penalty kick was overthrown and was gathered by Chard who punted to over halfway. After a couple of phases, Hornets lost the ball in contact, Herbert picked up and scored.
Things went from bad to worse when Chard scored another converted try. From the kick off, Hornets were awarded a penalty, the quick tap was taken and a poor pass resulted in the ball being kicked through and picked up by Herbert to score under the posts for his hat-trick. The kick was again converted.
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A final score of the half again resulted from the kick off when Chard just ran through the Hornets back line, whose tackling was now almost non-existent. Neil Douglas touching down to make the score 42-0 at half-time
After the break, Chard turned on a performance of Super 14 style rugby inspired by their Kiwi imports Douglas and Bennett at 10 and 12 respectively, the loss of whom will leave a big hole when they return to New Zealand next season.
Hornets did have two 10 minute spells where they were camped in the Chard 22, but there was no let up in the Chard defence and Hornets lacked a cutting edge to break through.
There was a late consolation try for Greg Speller, converted by Sam Lloyd Jones, however Chard had already added to the score board several times and ran in tries from Mark Parsons (2), Lee Massey, James Twigg, Douglas for a second , Bennett for a third and Ben King in the second half.
Hornets went into the game knowing that two wins from the last three games would be enough to make them champions and it looked like they had settled for a loss in this one before they started.