Sperry try hat-trick as Withy rack up 50 points in opening day win

PUBLISHED: 12:34 06 September 2018

Archant

Withycombe made a superb start to the new league season, recording a 50-15 home win over a Lanner side playing their first season in the Tribute Cornwall and Devon League.

After winning the toss ad opting to play against the wind and down the slope, Withy were quickly into their stride and, following a powerful drive, Jake O’Neil crossed for the first try of the new campaign and Glen Channing slotted the conversion.

Just 10 minutes later, after involvement from Neil Williams and Alex Taylor, Danny Sansom scampered home from 40-yards and a second Channing conversion made it 14-

Lanner bagged a try back, but, after a water break a line out led to another drive and the evergreen Mark Williamson went over before some more magic from Sansom set up winger Adam Sperry to score and a third conversion from Channing left Withy holding a 26-5 advantage.

Just before the break a Neil Williams try was answered by a Lanner penalty and Withy trooped off at the interval with a 31-8 lead.

Early in the second half a trademark barn-storming Neil Taylor run ended with the supporting Lee Tanton crossing the whitewash.

There was then a lull in the scoring until a line out was won and Sperry took the ball on, showing the Lanner defenders a clean set of heels as he crossed and Lee Tanton tucked away the conversion to make it 45-8.

In the closing stages Jake O’Neil was sent for an early bath before Lanner got a second try, but Withy had the final say when Sperry was again released and once more he left the trailing defenders in his wake to cross in the clubhouse corner to complete an opening day try hat-trick and see Withy to a half century of points.

With Alex Taylor serving up a Man of the Match shift and John Parkin looking impressive, Withy were in complete control and new boys Bryn Cresswell and Paddy Haddad put in excellent Withy debuts.

Withycombe 2nd XV made a short trip to Tiverton without a full team, but put in a wonderful collective shift, before being edged out 22-20.

This Saturday (September 8), Withy 1st XV travel to Plymouth Argaum and the Withy 2nd XV entertain Sidmouth 2nds at Raleigh Park.

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