Winscombe edged out by Chew Valley

PUBLISHED: 09:09 12 October 2017

Winscombe RFC

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Winscombe 20 - Chew Valley 21

Winscombe and Chew Valley met at Longfield on a beautiful autumn day and produced a thrilling encounter that any rugby fan would have been pleased to witness.

Chew, who were sitting in second place in the league, might have proved a daunting prospect for the Winscombe outfit that were yet to register a win this season. But it was Winscombe who were in control. Fly-half Jim Merryfield, back after a lengthy injury lay off, moving the Chew pack around effectively. Any Chew attacks were kept at bay, the Winscombe defence holding firm.

Flanker Adam Fisher making several strong turnovers and full back Ben Irons fielding the high ball effectively.

On the 35 minute mark, Winscombe were reduced to 14 men when scrum-half Will Thomas tackled his opposite man after a quick tap penalty and Chew struck from the resulting lineout drive for a seven point score and the lead at half-time.

Winscombe began the second period well and when wing Callum Stewart darted back in field, Chew were panicking and were penalised for slowing the ball up and Winscombe were on the scoreboard.

Chew were handed back possession from the resulting kick off and for off side and instantly took their chance. Securing clean lineout ball and building phases, their patience was rewarded with another powerful try and conversion.

Winscombe’s work rate increased and they pushed hard into Chew territory camping on the Chew five meter line and gaining several penalties at the scrum but for the attack to be extinguished by a referees decision against the Combe front row that could have gone either way.

Chew once again fought their way back up field and with their back row in fine form the No 8 sensed a gap and scored their third try which was again converted to take the lead to 3-21.

Winscombe then instigated a fabulous rear guard offensive. Ben Irons powering to the line was soon followed by a brace of tries for Owen Howell. All of which were sparked by direct, hard running and accurate passing. Winscombe looked back to their marauding best. But with a conversion to win the game the Chew charge down was successful and Winscombe missed out once more.

The best display from Winscombe this term, albeit another frustrating one.

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