Late penalty gives Weston narrow victory

Andy Glen.

Andy Glen. - Credit: Archant

A penalty in the eighth minute of time added saw Weston to a narrow two-point victory over visitors Newent.

Weston 19 pts

Newent 17 pts

In a match of 26 penalty awards, it was all decided in the eighth minute of time added when centre Glenn Dickson kicked his fourth to give the Seasiders their 13th league victory of the season.

Earlier, in a closely-contested match, Weston were fortunate when visiting captain Ross Webb failed to convert a fairly straight penalty from 25 metres. But as the hosts dominated both the set scrums and the line-outs, Dickson’s brace of penalties in the 23rd and 27th minutes provided a deserved advantage.

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George Sparks’ pack continued to press and in first-half stoppage time they were rewarded with a penalty try which Dickson converted, but their 13-point advantage was eventually cancelled out.

Weston used all of their replacements, Rich Ford, Bryan Webb and Kirk Middlemiss after 55 minutes, but soon afterwards, skipper Webb was on target with a penalty, and worse was to follow as Newent started to progress.

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A try by centre Charlie Gellert was converted by Webb and although Dickson’s third penalty gave the Seasiders a six-point advantage, this was soon lost.

In the final minutes of normal time, hooker Lee Warren was driven over, and Webb’s conversion gave the visitors a single-point lead.

But by now, Andrew Glen and Sam Coles, who had been replaced, returned to give the Seasiders’ scrum its previous impetus.

In the 83rd minute, Dickson was just wide from 40 metres, but five minutes later he was on target from 45, closely followed by the final whistle.

Weston will be pleased with this win to cancel out their narrow 8-11 defeat in Gloucestershire last month.

Things went well while the set scrum was at full strength and hooker Mike Hocking’s throwing in at the line-out was the best of the season. But although they defended stoutly, there were plenty of attacking errors in the backs.

Also, although enjoying territorial advantage, the hosts made it more difficult for themselves by opting for set scrums for three of the kickable penalties awarded to them in the second half. Nevertheless, Dickson still passed the 150-point mark for the season.

Weston: R Bennett, M Burns, H Morgan, G Dickson, M Watkins, D Lomax, H Tuttiett, S Coles, M Hocking, O Streeter, A Glen, A Russell, G Sparks (c), R Bignell, P Morrissey. Replacements: R Ford, B Webb, K Middlemiss.

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