Chiefs notch first win in style


The Chiefs gained their first league win of the season in style, scoring eight tries against newly promoted North Dorset. After an evenly contested first quarter, Sidmouth gradually gained the ascendancy before cutting loose in the second half.

North Dorset, making their first ever visit to the Blackmore, made a determined start and produced the first dangerous move of the game when their outside centre made a break with plenty of support. The Sidmouth cover defence was at full stretch to snuff out the danger just short of their line. Then, in the tenth minute, Tom Whelan calmed nerves with a well struck penalty.

IMG 8475

The Chiefs enjoyed territorial advantage as the half progressed and eventually increased their lead when Sam Meadham ran back a missed touch kick and James Leat acted as the link to send Matt Farrington in. Tom Hodge added the conversion.

IMG 8513

The visitors finished the half strongly. A fine handling move was only halted a couple of metres short of the line by a James Leat tackle on his opposite number. Good defence by the forwards against a lineout set move maintained the blank sheet and the score remained 10-0 at the break.

North Dorset were reduced to 14 men soon after the restart, when the fly half was yellow carded. Tom Whelan kicked the resulting penalty and the Chiefs ran in three tries while the offender was off the field. Jack Pyne burst out of his own 22 to start a move carried on by Tom Hodge and Whelan, finished off by Josh Bess. Rhys Thomas pounced on a loose ball from a scrum near the North Dorset line to gather and dive over. Then Sam Meadham came from the blindside wing to cut through the centre before sending James Powell clear for a try converted by Whelan.

IMG 8553

Sam Meadham capped a Dukes man-of-the-match performance with two tries in the middle of the half. Both came at the end of long range handling moves initiated by Jason Luff breaks, and both were converted.

IMG 8485

Tom Seward was next to cross the whitewash when he followed up a Tom Whelan high kick, which the defenders failed to deal with. Whelan converted before the scoring was completed, when Tom Irish drove over from close range after good inter-passing by the forwards.