Make no bones about it Torquay are a good side, at least one of their players, the hooker, played England under 16s, 18s and, Graham thinks, under 20s, and one of the wingers for the under 18s South West.
Having said that we helped them to win, I think they were always going to win but the margin was down to us. It is easy from the side lines for me to say poor last up tackling, but their backs were good and did a nifty line in side steps.
In the tight and loose the forwards did the biz, they pushed the Torquay scrum and did well in the loose, short tackling was good.
Our backs had some good runs and might have scored one more try and all in all we might have scored a third.
As it was Torquay gave away lots of penalties and that kept us in the game thanks to Matt Anstis
and his boot.
Inside three minutes Matt put over the first of his four penalties to give us the lead, Torquay struck straight back with a good handling try aided by a sweet side step. The conversion was missed and four minutes later Matt Anstis
put over his second to sneak back the lead at 6~5.
Torquay re took the lead after a penalty was converted in to a line-out and from that a simple straight run through the middle and under the cross bar to give their kicker an easy conversion. 6~12.
Matt’s third penalty took the score board to 9~12.
Another Torquay converted try started their pull away, a penalty and another converted try and the score, closing in on half time, stood at 12~27.
With the whistle about to go we attacked their line, Matt dropped back and sure enough, under pressure, a drop goal wobbled its way over the bar. 15~27 at the break.
After the restart we got off to an electric start inside the first minute. Mike Hunt
made one of his trade mark bullocking runs right down the middle, Nathan Barnes
playing at scrum half, out of his normal hooking position sent the ball right to the backs, along the line ending with Devon Bethal
who was able to hold off the defender to touch down with one hand. Matt put over a difficult conversion from the side lines, With the score at 22~27 we were still in the game.
Five minutes later Torquay in attack won a penalty well inside our twenty two, caught us napping and their forward, though stopped short, was just able to reach for the line to score.
The easy conversion took them to a 22~34 lead.
For the next twenty five minutes we held them and put in some good attacks of our own, in one a great steal by Steve Wells
was send down the line to Dave
Hall who make a ripping run through the middle, got tackled, passed to Devon Bathal who came close to a second but was stopped short.
Then we got close to their line again and won a five meter scrum, while for most of the game we pushed them, just when we probably should have had a push over try, they put in a supreme effort and disrupted us.
Right at the end they won a scrum on our line and from it a converted try. 22~41.
That score distorted the look of the game, to be fair they well outscored us in tries, Matt kept us in touch. Had they not got their last try and had we scored one other, both of which could have been, it would have been a close game and considering that they are third in the merit table would have cracking result.