Devonport Services II 24 ~ Crediton II 15
A very even game.
At least the second team won, not easily but they won. Crediton never made it easy, with a strong pack and a solid lineout getting ball was never going to be easy.
The game was very even and by half time a penalty by each team was a fair reflection of the way the half went. Crediton missed a penalty inside the first thirty seconds, fortunately, then on ten minute they did get one. Matt Anstis put over our penalty on twenty minutes.
The problem was not enough ball to the backs, once again we had so much speed and ability in the backs we could kill most teams but without clean ball they could not do much.
In the scrums they were a little stronger nudging us backwards and stealing one against the head.
I always had the feeling in my water that we would win, their backs did not have much speed.
Twelve minutes into the second half we eventually we got a little snippet of luck, they were passing the ball along their line somewhere around the half way line, a wild pass went a long way in front of their receiving player, Phil Greenside snapped it up and accelerated away through the gap, they gave chase but with no chance of catching him, Phil went over south of the posts and around and touched down between them. Matt converted and we were 10~3 up. For the next eighteen minutes a quiet evenness came over the game again. Then Matt hit the post with a penalty attempt, their player caught it, started to run out under pressure, his mates shouted to touch it down for the twenty two, what they meant was to touch it down behind the try line, he, by this time was on the five meter line, so touch it down he did. “Knock on” went up the cry and we won a scrum, after a few attacks on their line we won another scrum on the other side, Stu Bartlett picked up under pressure and passed it to Matt, who by this time was playing at scrum half in place of Ryan Morris. Matt had the strength to make it to the line, the referee. with three defenders holding on to him, “Ball on the line” said Howard Coffey and he converted his own effort, 17~3. At this point we looked watertight, but Crediton did not give up and came back with a try and conversion. Not to be outdone we counter attacked a number of times, on the final attack the ball went to Shaun Pearson, a safe handler of the ball and dead straight runner with a surprising turn of speed and who always makes the yards.
From about ten yards out he burst the defence, stopped short he had the reach to get the ball over the line. Matt added another conversion and we were 24 ~ 10 up with injury time to go. Again Crediton not waving the white flag put in a last attack and touched down in the top corner, the conversion went wide and the whistle went with it. 24 ~ 15.
Matt Anstis took man-of-the-match for a good try and a good day with the boot.
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