REGIONAL 2 TRIBUTE SOUTH-WEST
TEIGNMOUTH 18 TRURO 17
Teignmouth continued to celebrate their 150th anniversary with an all-day party featuring a firework display, live music and kiddies’ activities.
But there was no doubting that the main event was the rugby, and the Teigns, aided by their biggest crowd of the season, were in no mood to spoil the atmosphere.
The home side went into the match still looking over their shoulders at the relegation zone, and they felt that a home match against a middle of the table side like Truro was an ideal opportunity to put a little more distance between themselves and those below them.
However, Truro, who had a lousy start to their season, have been on a good run of late, and arrived at Bitton Park determined to prolong that run.
The result was a feisty affair with neither side willing to give an inch, and on several occasions their enthusiasm spilt over into physical confrontations, which were contrary to the laws of the game.
Truro started the game very much on the front foot, looking to release their two nippy wingers Matt Blewett and Matt Symons at every opportunity, and within eight minutes of the kick-off they were ahead when Symons ran in the first try.
However, the Teigns have some pace in the backs themselves, and two minutes later a superb run from Man of the Match Jordan Hellier, supported by flanker Jai Simmons eventually saw winger Aiden Fisher touch down near the posts, giving Jack Mayne the chance to put his side ahead with the conversion.
At that point, another high scoring game seemed on the cards, but the remainder of the first half became a bit of an arm-wrestle. While the visitors were clearly on top in the scrums, the Teigns’ defence, subject to some criticism from coaches and report writer of late, showed far more solidity in the tackle. Consequently, there was only one more score in the first period, when Truro’s Ross Denning put them ahead two minutes from half-time, and Josh Anderson added the extras.
The second half was just as tight as the first.
Mayne potted an early penalty, but the Cornishmen extended their lead in the 55th minute with a second try from Symons. At this stage things looked bleak for the home side, as George Franklin found himself in the sin-bin as he became the latest in a series of players to be penalised.
But contrary to expectations, the 14 men upped their game, and Hellier once again took on the visitors’ defence, and with Faolan Lidstone’s help set up Jack Bond for a carbon copy of the first try.
This left the Teigns two points behind with around 20 minutes remaining.
Back to the full complement of players they began to batter away at the visitors’ defence, and four minutes into injury time finally won a penalty on 22 metres out, which Mayne nervelessly slotted to the noisy approval of the large crowd.
Obviously head coach Colin Stewart was delighted with the result, but ever the perfectionist he commented that his side had made the victory much more difficult than it needed to be, especially by falling foul of the referee on multiple occasions. Nevertheless, he was pleased to see that work done in training sessions had paid dividends when the team were in possession, especially in the build-up to the two tries.
Next week sees the side travel to Wadebridge for another tough encounter against Cornish opposition.
Dayne Layton, Pete Parsons, Dan Allison, Jack Bowen, Pete Bilham, Jai Simmons, Jake Allison, George Franklin, Dan Woolnough, Rio Cooper, Aiden Fisher, Faolan Lidstone, Jordan Hellier, Jack Bond, Jack Mayne BENCH: Jamie Gray, Mike Wright