Sidmouth 3rd XV v New Cross 2nds

Sidmouth 3rd XV 13, New Cross 2nds 25

Sidmouth 3rd XV had the honour of playing at the Blackmore last Saturday but came up short against a well drilled New Cross side who took their opportunities whereas Sidmouth did not, writes Will Holland.

Sidmouth, being the generous bunch, lent New Cross two players as they only came with 13 of their own. The first 10 minutes of the game was very even, with both teams probing the other for weaknesses. Sidmouth went close a couple of times but the ball was dropped on both occasions once it was spread wide.

New Cross scored first against the run of play, stretching the home side’s defence before finding an overlap and scoring in the corner. Sidmouth replied with Adam Howe making one of his trademark bursting runs from deep to touch down. Adam Squance added a penalty before James Ford was carried off injured with a suspected broken collar bone when Sidmouth had a lot of pressure before deciding to run a penalty where Ford was battered. Sidmouth probably should have scored again when Neil Barratt broke through but did not have support and he was stopped just short. New Cross replied with a penalty just before the interval to leave the half time score 8-8.

The second half started with New Cross playing with 14 men for an infringement just before half time and Sidmouth took advantage with a great scrum by the forwards. Full back Mark Bishop was able to profit and touch down to give Sidmouth the lead. Unfortunately, this was as good as it got for the home side as, when New Cross went back to 15 players, they took the game to Sidmouth who failed to mark up out wide and all too often over committed at the rucks and mauls. Overlaps out wide saw New Cross score far too easily. Chances for Sidmouth were too easily butchered with passing and ball handling being of a poor quality. In the end New Cross ran in three tries in the second half and were comfortable winners.

Thanks to Kevin Luke and John Galling who played for the opposition and a big welcome back for Captain Hakim Bakrim. Best wishes to James Ford for a speedy recovery.