Hicks and Musgrove star as Withy Under-16s are toppled by Taunton

PUBLISHED: 13:45 29 January 2019

Action from the Withy Under-16s meeting with Taunton. Picture IAIN COOPER

Action from the Withy Under-16s meeting with Taunton. Picture IAIN COOPER

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Withycombe Under-16s gave a good account of themselves when they met Taunton in a contest that finished 29-17 to the Somerset side.

The game was played as a 14-a-side fixture owing to the fact that Withy were missing a number of their players through illness and injury.

With a strong cross-wind blowing, Withy got things underway and they had the lion’s share of territorial advantage in the early exchanges.

They pushed Taunton deeper and deeper before, from a line-out, Matt Oliver took the ball over under the posts and Will Copper slotted the conversion.

Taunton hit back, marching the ball powerfully through the middle of the pitch with their large forwards making inroads into the Withy line and, after a serious of phases, they crossed in the corner for an unconverted try.

Fortune then smiled on Taunton as they scored a second – opportunist – try which was converted to give them a 12-7 lead. Withy were then the masters of their own downfall when a poorly thrown pass was intercepted for a Taunton player to race clear for an unconverted try. The half ended with Withy in the ascendency, but unable to penetrate the Taunton defence and half-time arrived with Withy trailing 17-7.

The opening exchanges of the second half were even-steven, but 10 minutes in Taunton struck again via their winger for another unconverted try.

Undaunted, Withy continued to probe and it was no more than they deserved when Matt Hicks crossed for his team’s second try of the game.

Taunton’s response was to score another try, but Withy had the final say as they finished the contest on the front foot with Lewis Hillier on the end of a well-worked overlap move to complete the scoring.

Withy gave plenty to a good contest played in difficult conditions. The Withy Man of the Match awards went to Matt Hicks and Finn Musgrove.

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