DORSET & WILTS Division 1 North Sutton Benger 29 - 24 Westbury
Saturday 22nd January 2022
This is a game that Westbury should have won, having played some really good rugby and scoring more tries than their opponents. However once again their penalty count was horrendous. In fact, nearly all of Sutton Benger points were scored either directly or indirectly due to Westbury’s indiscipline or basic errors.
Straight from the kick off in the first move of the game Westbury were penalised when the tackled player hung on to the ball on the ground. 3 points conceded. Five minutes later, they were penalised again, being caught off side at a ruck. 6 points to nil.
Westbury eventually got their act together and took the lead, when on 10 minutes the flanker Ash Hart, scored a try which was converted by Mathew Inseal. Then, on 15 minutes Westbury were again penalised for a high tackle. This brought a yellow card from the referee and 3 more points to the opposition. 9 – 7. Westbury were penalised once more on 22 minutes, this time for driving up in a scrum 12 – 7.
On 30 minutes, following a scrum, the ball was passed out to Westbury’s veteran Fijian, Stee Koro, who burst through the defence to level the score at 12 – 12, the conversion was missed.
This was followed within a couple of minutes, when Jamie Dixon, playing at centre received a brilliant pass from Koro which put him in space just 10 metres inside his on half. Dixon raced the length of the field to touch down and score. Inseal added the extra points. Westbury had a slender lead at half time 12 - 19 but confidence was high.
It took 15 minutes for Westbury to open the scoring in the second half. After pressurising the Sutton try line, they had failed to score but had given Sutton Benger a chance to clear the ball with a drop out from under the posts. The kick was caught and the ball ran back by the Westbury forwards and a ruck set up just short of the try line. Second row Jamie Comley picked up the ball at the back of the ruck and dived over to score. The conversion was missed 12 - 24 to the visitors.
The last 20 minutes saw Westbury giving away far too many penalties and twice within 10 minutes Sutton Benger were gifted quick tap kicks inside Westbury’s 22 area, from which they scored two unconverted tries. Westbury were just leading 22 - 24 with 10 minutes to go. They were under great pressure from Sutton Benger who then won a line out on Westbury’s 5 metre line all from a Westbury error, the ball was quickly moved down the line to score a converted try.
Westbury were behind by 29 – 24. They then threw everything they could at their opponents and came close to scoring but prop, Josh Ford, was brought down inches short of the line. The ball was quickly moved to the backs but unfortunately possession was lost and the ball was kicked into touch by the defence which brought the match to a close.
This was a disappointing loss to the visitors, where simple penalties cost them so much.
Next Saturday, 29th January, Westbury are at home to Marlborough 2nds who are just one point behind them in the league. So, a must win game.
Paul Couzens – Club President