Weapon wings it in to help the Titans beat the Bishops
In an enthralling game the Titans came out on top after coming from behind 3 times.
Taunton Titans managed to squeeze pass Bishops Stortford in a very tense, stop start but yet entertaining game at Hyde Park where the lead changed 5 times.
The Titans were first on the score board with a penalty kicked by full back Gary Kingdom before Bishops score two tries in 3 minutes. The first try was started deep in their own half where a couple of missed tackles allowed Stortford to make their way up into the Titans 22 where an excellent inside ball to the on rushing Sam Winter allowed him to go in under the posts. This was converted by full back Pier Dotta to give the visitors a 3 – 12 lead.
Straight from the kick off another missed tackle allowed Bishops to get their second when centre Dom Morris dived over after several quick phases. The conversion was missed but the visitors now had a 9 point lead. The play then moved from end to end with both teams seeming to spill the greasy ball in vital areas.
The hosts got themselves back into the game when winger Jack Claydon went over. From a lineout drive inside the Bishops 10 meter line the ball was fed out for Nick Mason to send his bulk into the defensive line. This was followed by another 10 or so phases from both the backs and forwards carrying into the stubborn Bishops defence with County Stores Man of the Match Jon Gatford taking the ball forward on several occasions. From one ruck scrum half Lewis Webb passed to Brett Harvey who broke the first tackle before offloading to Mason who drew the last defender for ‘Weapon’ to score. Kingdom added the conversion and then added a penalty on the stroke of half time to send the Titans in at the break with a 1 point advantage 13 – 12.
Bishops started the second half well claiming the lead once more with a penalty kicked by Dotta. The Titans were then close to pressing the self-destruct button with two yellow cards, the first to Charlie Walker-Blair for hands in the ruck and the second to Jack Claydon who slipped when challenging for a high ball and took out his opposite number. However the 13 men of the Titans dug deep and defended well and managed to keep the ball for long periods to see out the sin bins without conceding a point.
When the Titans were back to their full complement a Bishops lineout was overthrown and Jon Gatford was on hand to slip the ball to Paul Davis who used his big paw to hand off the on rushing defender to break clear. Davis then timed his pass to perfection and sent in Jack Claydon who was full of running after his 10 minute rest to score his second try of the game. Kingdom once again added the extras. With 10 minutes of the game still to go it was still nip and tuck but the home scrum had the advantage and shunted the host off their own ball several times to see the game out and claim a hard earned win.
The Titans were once again not at their best with too many dropped balls in the greasy conditions, too many wrong options and some poor defence. Even with these uncharacteristic errors they still managed the win against one of the top sides in the division. The forwards were dominant in all departments but the team will have to improve if they want to reclaim the top of the league place that they have now lost to Cambridge.