Exmouth versus Barnstaple - the two teams' form this season to date
PUBLISHED: 13:00 28 February 2019
Exmouth face a tough task on Saturday as they look to defeat a Barnstaple side that has already won away 'Devon derby' matches at Brixham, Newton Abbot and Ivybridge this season.
Barum have played nine games away from home in their South West premier campaign and have won six and lost three.
There are always points in the Barum away games – they have not scored fewer than 15, but, at the other end of the pitch, they have concede at least 17 on every away ground they have visited this season.
They lost their first away fixture of the season – going down 38-24 at Bournemouth – but then won 28-19 at Brixham and 31-19 at Cleve before being edged out 18-15 by hosts Exeter University in late October.
They played away once in November, winning 31-25 at Ivybridge, and also had just the one away league outing in December – that a 29-26 win at Newton Abbot. They had two January away games and won both – claiming a 32-17 success at Bracknell and followed that with a narrow 20-18 win at Camborne.
However, if there is something for the Imperial Ground faithful to hang onto then it’s the fact that in their last away game – at Drybrook on February 9 – Barum were beaten 27-19. In contrast, the Cockles’ home form has been good this season.
In 10 home games so far, just two visiting sides have departed with victories.
The home campaign began with a 38-22 win over Cleve and there followed four further successive home wins with University (31-24), Weston-super-Mare (22-13), Maidenhead (22-14) and Old Patesians (50-24) all beaten.
The home winning sequence was ended by the November 17 visit of table-topping Bournemouth, who won the game 30-13, and the next home game was also lost as Brixham inflicted a 37-26 defeat on the Cockles.
However, the last three home games have all been won with Drybrook beaten 41-29, Ivybridge seen off 43-32 and, most recently, Newton Abbot were beaten 24-17 on February 9.
The Cockles were beaten 25-21 on their early November visit to North Devon.
● Read the thoughts of Cockles head coach Steve Perry online at www.exmouthjournal.co.uk