Devon U16 Shield Final

An impressive Kingsbridge team won the Devon U16 Shield at Sandy Park on Sunday but not before a fantastic game which could have gone either way until well into the second half. Through this age-group Kingsbridge have consistently been the best team with a game is characterized by power, intensity and ball retention. Sidmouth have developed through the junior seasons in contrast to Kingsbridge play a game based on tempo, handling and pace. 

Sidmouth opened the scoring after the ball was whipped from one side of Sandy Park to the other to give right winger Faulkner enough space, one-on-one with a defender, to notch up his 30th try of the season. The next two Sidmouth tries were equally impressive with Faulkner bagging his 31st followed by a score for Locke after great distribution by Toomey and an outside break by Cotton. These scores were punctuated by a couple of fairly easy tries to Kingsbridge, the result of intensity and pressure in defensive situations. So by half time the lead had see-sawed and Kingsbridge had the advantage thanks to a try by fly-half Matt Hodgson who ran hard at a stretched Sidmouth defence and the teams turned around with the scores 19-29.

Sidmouth then created the play of the game. From deep in their own 22 the hard running Carlisle side-stepped England International Stu Townsend to initiate a length of the pitch attack involving Goddard, Faulkner, Wells-Burr, Locke, Cotton and Webber. This breathtaking move was held-up a few inches short and the resulting scrum was the turning point in the game. Kingsbridge, with some smart gamesmanship, held-back Sidmouth flanker Gilby and scrum-half Elliot Pound spotted room on the blind side to start a length of the pitch move finished off by the outstanding Townsend to open a three score lead which Sidmouth couldn’t claw back.

Looking forward to next season, 13 of the Sidmouth team have already played Colts rugby and plans are well underway to transition the whole team into what has the potential to be an extremely good Colts side - but not before a well earned break.

Sidmouth 19   -    39 Kingsbridge