Smith try double as Exmouth Nomads see off Sidmouth
PUBLISHED: 13:34 12 March 2019
Exmouth Nomads won a hastily arranged friendly with Sidmouth 2nds after their original fixture – a league meeting with Exeter Engineers – was not played owing the opposition having ‘double booked’.
With Sidmouth currently sitting top of Devon Merit Table 2, this was always going to be a tough outing for Nomads who, short of a few regulars, were able to call on Cockles’ director of rugby Nick Smith to play so that the game could go ahead with contested scrums.
For the second week running, Nomads started ferociously and put in a number of big tackles leaving Sidmouth in no doubt that the Nomads were out to exact revenge for the two league games lost this season!
Despite Exmouth making a number of concerted efforts to breach the Sidmouth line, their defence stood strong until the 20th minute.
First on the score sheet for Exmouth was Bertie Hughes, who ran back a Sidmouth clearance from the hallway line. The conversion attempt from Andrew Smith drifted just wide.
With Sidmouth suffering an injury Exmouth lent them utility player Joe Schunk, who for the remainder of the half slotted into the back-row. Despite the narrow score line of 5-0, it was Exmouth dominating with the back row trio of Westaway, Hooper and Garrett making a nuisance of themselves all over the park.
It was powerful centre Andrew Smith who scored two further tries for the Nomads to see them reach half-time with a 15-0 lead.
The break saw a number of changes for Exmouth and, with Sidmouth suffering further injuries, Exmouth then lent them a further three players to keep the game going.
With the large number of changes, the second half lacked the fluidity of the first, which saw a number of scrums due to handling errors. This suited the heavy home pack that were now taking Sidmouth off their own ball.
The last try of the afternoon fell to Glen Layton, who produced a deft kick over the defence, managed to get to the ball before the fullback and then hack on to score a wonderful solo try outside. Again, the conversion was missed and with Sidmouth suffering further injuries the referee halted proceedings fifteen minutes into the second half.
The Nomads Man of the Match award went to Martin Westaway, who rolled back the years playing in the unfamiliar position of number eight and who proved to be too much for Sidmouth to handle on the day.