After the previous week's win against Cricklade, Westbury were hoping to continue with the momentum of that game. But with several members of the team unavailable for selection it was going to be a struggle to raise a side. Chairman ‘Foggy’ Vaughan called in a few favours to entice some of Westbury’s ‘fringe’ members to play. So it was with two father and son combinations and some players who had not played many games this season Westbury set off to Colerne thinking it was to be a damage limitation exercise knowing that they had lost to the home side earlier this season.
The match kicked off and for the first 20 minutes there was little to choose between the teams until Westbury centre, Logan Smith, seeing some space, drove up the middle of the pitch to score the opening try. The conversion was missed. This was followed by full back, Nick Taylor, in his first start for the 1st XV. The ball was shipped down the line to him and he outpaced everybody to score a converted try. Colerne pulled a try back after taking a quick tap penalty and driving over the line. The conversion was good. Half time arrived with Westbury leading 12 – 7 and the match pretty even.
The second half kicked off with Westbury’s forwards soon realising that they were starting to dominate the opposition and with veteran standoff, Chris Vaughan’s excellent positional kicking the pressure was gradually being applied on the Colerne defence. Within 10 minutes, Westbury capitalised after a scrum. The forwards powered up the field as a unit, for lock Marcus Holstead to score. Vaughan kicked the conversion. By now Chris Vaughan, who was warming to his task, was beginning to run the show and with a clever change of direction to wrong foot the defence he put Logan Smith over for his second try. Unfortunately the conversion was missed. The next try was down to the forwards, when from a 5 metre scrum they drove the opposition back over their try line for flanker, Ferran Adams, to touch down. Once more the conversion was missed. 5 minutes later, Logan Smith was back on the score sheet for his hat trick try when the ball was quickly moved out to him following a tap penalty. This time Vaughan added the conversion.
To be fair to Colerne, always looking dangerous, had mounted several attacks of their own and were unlucky not to score on a couple of occasions. Their persistence was rewarded on the half hour though with a converted try when Westbury were penalised for infringing the offside line and switching off concentration, allowing Colerne an easy score.
The visitors were now stung into action and Westbury’s other flanker, Ryan Knight, scored after Westbury had won a scrum deep in the Colerne half. The ball came out just behind him. Knight turned, picked the ball up and powered over the line. Once more Vaughan kicked the extras.
The final try of the match was scored by Sam Pascoe when Westbury were awarded a penalty after Ryan Knight had been ‘dump’ tackled. The penalty was quickly taken and the ball was passed to Sam who powered over in the corner. To round off his day Chris Vaughan slotted the 2 points making the score 50-14 to Westbury.
Westbury won this match mainly due to the forwards outperforming the opposing pack. Plus, clever use of the bench by chairman ‘Foggy’ Vaughan keeping his forwards fresh by interchanging them with all of the replacements. Also the veteran No 10, Chris Vaughan, was keeping Westbury on the front foot with his positional play and a lot of belief in the teams’ abilities even though, on paper, it was a scratch side.
By Paul Couzens