Davis shines as young Cockles defeat Topsham
PUBLISHED: 18:04 26 January 2011
EXMOUTH RFC under-9s travelled to local rivals Topsham for their latest fixture.
This is always an eagerly anticipated contest and with the hosts having a very good turn-out of players it was decided that two teams from the Tops would provide opposition for the young Cockles.
The first game saw the Cockles make a lively start. Eddie Ford picked up the ball and charged through the Tops defence only to be stopped just short of the line. From the re-start the Cockles quickly turned the ball over and it was fed along the line in a sweet passing exchange where it landed with Harry Sprague who began to power his way forward, taking a number of the host’s players with him. The ball was next fed out to Toby McConhaghy who ran clear to register the first Cockles score of the morning.
The hosts looked to respond but they found the Cockles defence, and in particular Aaron Lee and Thomas Preece, putting in some superb tackling to deny them.
Harry Sprague again picked up the mantle for the Cockles and was at the heart of much of the phases of attacking play.
Luke Davis played brilliantly for the Cockles charging through the Topsham defence, but the Tops held on until half time.
A quick pep talk at the break led to the Cockles emerging for the second half looking set to increase the tempo.
The opening action saw Owen Tidball gather the ball and charge towards the Tops line. He was held up just short of the line but, from the resulting maul, Ollie Jones received the ball and looked to have scored in the corner but was adjudged to have edged into touch prior to putting the ball down.
Topsham restarted, but Luke Davis, who had a fine game, stole the ball and again charged head down, but he was held up with a fine tackle just five metres from the line.
Then Harry Sprague was the lynch pin to another raid. The ball was eventually recycled Ollie Jones who saw the gap and sped through it to score.
Now in charge of proceedings, the Cockles began to play some excellent rugby with the hallmark being some really powerful defensive work.
Topsham tried hard to find a way back into the contest but to no avail and, when the ball was once again turned over, it was Owen Tidball who skipped through the Tops defence and ran half the length of the pitch to score.
The final whistle blew with the Cockles emerging as three tries to nil winners and with a performance that simply has to be detailed as the finest to date this season so far!
The second match saw a completely new Topsham side take on the same Exmouth side.
Although Exmouth tried hard in defence with great tackling demonstrated by Thomas Preece and Archie Symons, by the second half the fact that the Topsham side all had a fresh pair of legs began to show.
Exmouth were tired after their first all-out match and the second match finished seven tries to nil in Topsham’s favour.