Tribble try sees Cockles to share of the spoils at Weston-super-Mare
PUBLISHED: 10:47 14 January 2019
For the second week running the Cockles bagged a share of the spoils from an away game as they drew 13-all on their visit to Weston-super-Mare.
The first half of an entertaining contest proved to be one of attack and missed opportunity. Twice the Cockles were denied ‘scores’, first when Mark Wathes cut his way to the try line only for the match official to adjudge that there had been a knock-on over the line! The other ‘score’ to be disallowed was one by Ross Morshead.
The deadlock was broken on 21 minutes when Weston’s James Mackay slotted a penalty which proved to be the only score of the half and the players trooped off at the break with just those three points between them.
During the break, the Cockles would have surely been scratched their heads as to how they were behind!
Four minutes into the second half the home side scored the games first try when centre Marcus Nell crossed for a try, but the conversion from Mackay was missed and the home lead was now 8-0.
Five minutes later Weston winger Matt Watkins crossed for the home side’s second try and, with the conversion also missed the home lead stood at 13-0.
Despite the score line, the Cockles were very much ‘in the game’ although if that had a problem it was they were a little disjointed in their approach to finding field position to launch an attack of any real threat.
Breaks did come, but they were snuffed out by tight defence from the hosts. The Cockles finally got on the score board 12 minutes into the second half when fly-half George Meadows put away a penalty.
With a 13-3 lead, Weston missed the chance to extend their lead when Mackay put a penalty wide of the uprights and, with 25 minutes remaining Exmouth finally got some reward for their efforts. When flanker James Harris came up from the bottom of a catch and drive, a penalty was drilled deep in to Weston territory where a catch and drive from the line-out took the ball some 20 metres Harris took the ball over the line. Meadows was unable to land the conversion, but the margin between the teams was down to a single score at 13-8.
What was clear was that the Cockles had found a formula that worked! Five minutes after the Harris try, prop Charlie Tribble went over for a try that leveled things up at 13-all. From this point it seemed as if the Cockles would go on and seal a rare away success.
They did all they could but eventually were left frustrated. Working to get a decisive try, the referee felt Exmouth infringed and awarded a penalty that all but finished the game. Tom Whelan did get a penalty attempt from halfway, on a blustery day. Right direction, unfortunately the kick just dropped short. A little indecision from Weston meant the game rolled on for another four minutes, but eventually they kicked the ball away to touch, ending the match.
Travelling supporters might say that a draw was a little disappointing. On a day when Weston missed 13 points from kicks, the result could have been lost. Exmouth did get their opportunities and that may have swung the game in their favour. Frustrating for all concerned but a share of the points, away from home is a fair result.
The Cockles entertain Ivybridge this coming Saturday (January 19) in what promises to be a mouth-watering clash. Both teams will be looking to bounce back with a win. Cockles head coach Steve Perry will have a strong player list to draw from, after a couple of recent injuries.