Sidmouth vs Honiton, 18 Nov 2012

It was a beautiful, sunny day in Sidford, blue skies no wind. A fine day for rugby. There are certain moments in a coach’s career that make the enjoyable sublime! Today was such a day, with Sidmouth fielding 2 full sides for the first time this season and being more than competitive in both games. It must be noted, with immense pride, that 4 of our squad played their very first game today, and acquitted themselves with commitment, dignity and passion!! Game 1. After Sidmouth won the start Honiton surprised us with their speed and organisation. Honiton scored the first try before Ted Osborne opened the scoring for Sidmouth – only for Honiton to strike straight back again. Reuben Bennett then ran straight at the opposition offloading to Ted Osbourne for a second Siddy try. After a period of slogging it out, with both teams showing solid defence, Honiton managed to side-step our tackles to score a third try. George Taylor equalised the scores at 3 all, but then Honiton managed 2 quick tries before the end of the first half. The second half started with a series of solid tackles by both teams. Honiton then scored two more tries and Siddy’s Ted Osborne ran in his third of the day . Honiton’s dominance in speed and attack lead to three more tries. The final score of the first game 10 – 4 to Honiton. This was a real baptism of fire for the newcomers and they can rightly be supremely proud of their first venture into the world of contact rugby!! Game 2. Sidmouth started badly, giving the ball away on their own touch line and allowing their opponents an easy opener. Honiton quickly followed up with a well-run try avoiding our best efforts to contain. Honiton were proving a formidable and well drilled opponent. The remainder of the half saw some huge offensive tackling and continued defensive pressure from Sidmouth, but Honiton’s extreme pace lead to a three nil score line at half time. Sidmouth started the second half but once again the blistering pace of Honiton was just too much for us to endure as two quick tries were scored. The mighty James Allen then scored, with Honiton once again striking back. Then came a fine combination of play with Jimmy Brett passing to Noah Innes-Kruger, who broke numerous tackles before passing to George Manley who forced his way over Honiton’s try line – a real testament to refusing to give up. As a coup de grace, Honiton scored two more tries, through great running and speed to leave the final score of the second game at 8:2. Today the better team won, sadly it wasn’t us. We were given a lesson in ball retention and use of the ball. They recycled the ball calmly in the face of relentless defence. Coupled with their pace, despite our best efforts and solid defence, Honiton proved their superiority on the day. Much of both halves was played tight to the touch line and we were forced into touch way too often to allow effective attacking use of the ball; coupled with our propensity to lose the ball in contact, we were unable to unleash our runners. Although the scoreline belies the closeness of both games, we take away many lessons from today!