Winscombe victory ensures safety

Winscombe 40 pts Avon 24 pts - IN the penultimate game of the season, neither team s survival in Somerset Premier was secure so there was everything to play for with the winner being guaranteed safety.

Winscombe 40 ptsAvon 24 ptsIN the penultimate game of the season, neither team's survival in Somerset Premier was secure so there was everything to play for with the winner being guaranteed safety. Having been completely dismantled by Avon in the reverse fixture and having a number of first team starters missing, Winscombe were up against it and would have to make use of the home field advantage.Winscombe got off to a flying start when debutant Tim Farmer sliced through the Avon defence and offloaded to James Flower who raced in the remaining 30 metres to score. Within minutes Farmer helped create the next Winscombe try when his break and clever chip meant Matt Hoy Green was able to catch the Avon full back behind his own line for a five-metre scrum. After a couple of phases Gary Cox hit a straight line from Darren Bevan to score near the posts, Owen Howell converted. Avon then caught a break when Winscombe were penalised for holding on deep in their own half, and Avon kicked the penalty. This did not stop Winscombe's momentum as they took over every facet of play. The forwards were destructive in the scrum and efficient in the line-out with Dan Fryer showing a master class in accurate throwing and non-stop work around the park. After in-roads were made by powerful runs by Will Foster and Andy Ball, the ball was spun wide where Flower was held up just short of the line but Bevan was there to bundle over the line for another try. Then Howell converted a penalty to put Winscombe ahead 20-3. However, with only minutes left in the half Winscombe Hoy Green was bundled into touch over the dead ball line and with quick reactions the Avon full-back took a quick 22 drop-out and out-ran all defenders in a chase and despite the hint of a knock-on, scored under the posts for a converted try for 20-10 at half time.Winscombe started the second half as most of the first had gone, through entire domination from 1 to 15. The forwards, led by Iain Robinson, Dan Fryer and Stu Warren, turned the screw on their smaller opponents and provided a great platform for the dangerous backs. The backs started things rolling again when having sucked in the Avon defence the ball was spread wide to Flower who easily rounded his opposite number and stepped inside the full-back to score under the posts for his second. Pressure was now telling on the tired Avon defence and they conceding penalties to try and slow down the rampaging Winscombe forwards, Howell converted two kicks to take the score to 33-10.Avon came back with another converted try which was down to Winscombe taking their foot off the gas. But this blip in form was eradicated when Foster and Mike Vowles carried on from another long break by Farmer, before it was left to Louis Hooper to dive over from short range, Howell tacked on the extras to effectively end the game as a contest. The last action of the game came from Avon benefiting from some weak Winscombe defence to add a converted try.

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