Hornets suffer narrow defeat in first match
Hornets started the season with a narrow defeat at Ivybridge.
Ivybridge 9 pts
Hornets 7 pts
Hornets came away from Devon disappointed not to have the win, but on reflection will be pleased to have registered a bonus point is a game that was dominated by the weather.
Hornets fielded a significantly different line-up to the one that would have started last season, but the fact that the team put in such a good performance in such difficult conditions is a reflection on the strength in depth they are starting to build.
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The early stages of the game were dominated by the rain, and whenever either side attempted to string passes together it inevitably resulted in a spilt ball. The resulting scrums soon indicated that the Ivybridge pack had the upper hand and Hornets did well to hold the scrum at bay, at least until the home pack started to tire in the second half.
Along with the high number of scrums came a lot of penalties, in the early stages in Hornets’ favour, but as the game wore on more and more to the home team.
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The score remained 0-0 until Ivybridge broke the deadlock in the 30th minute and then doubled their lead with another penalty kick just before half time.
The second half saw Hornets starting to put some plays together and on the hour, a series of pick and goes by the pack exposed a crack in the Ivybridge defence which Ben Fry exploited by darting through gap to touch down.
Charlie Carter showed off his long-hidden kicking skills by slotting the conversion to put Hornets into a 6-7 lead.
Fry and the Ivybridge flanker then saw yellow for a scuffle and the home side were lucky not to lose another man for a dangerous tip at a ruck which was punished only by a penalty, which Carter again kicked deep.
As the minutes ticked by and Hornets retained the majority of possession, it looked like they were going to hold on for a valuable win, but it was not to be, as Ivybridge turned over an over-ambitious Hornets attack, kicked the ball clear deep into the Hornets half and from the resulting breakdown were awarded a penalty.
The Ivybridge kicker maintained his composure and slotted a good kick from out wide to put his side into a winning 9-7 lead.
Hornets will now regroup and focus on the positives to come out of the trip as they prepare for Saturday’s visit to The Nest of the Cornish All Blacks, Launceston.