Withycombe chalk up 12th straight success with win in Plymouth
PUBLISHED: 10:07 06 January 2020 | UPDATED: 10:07 06 January 2020
Withycombe duly made it 12 wins from as many Devon One matches this season, returning from a trip to Plymouth having beaten Old Technicians 28-13.
It was a case of 'even steven' in the opening exchanges before the opening score in the contest, a 15th minute Billy Evans penalty to see the home side into a 3-0 lead.
The first Withy score on the board came after Withy played through a series of penalties and scrums before the ball found its way to club captain Liam Cullen and crashed over for a 38th minute try and the conversion was slotted by Glenn Channing and Withy trooped off at the break with a 7-3 advantage.
The early second half exchanges saw the Withy game become more clinical and accurate, with more power and a clear desire throughout the team top increase the lead. The new impetus paid dividends as Neil Williams powered over, taking three home players with him and another successful conversion saw Withy into a 14-3 lead.
Five minutes later the name of Williams was back in the referee's notebook, though for a different treason as he was shown yellow to leave Withy playing the next 10 minutes a man light!
The home side took advantage and, with the slope also now in their favour, score two quick tries through scrum half Tom Blythe and Matt Simmonds crossing the whitewash. Both conversions were missed, but, an hour into the contest, the Withy lead had been trimmed to a single point at 14-13.
Not for the first time this season, Withy went through the gears in the final quarter and, with some fine running with the ball pinned the home side deep in their own 22 looking to force mistakes and, after a succession of penalties, it was Aussie Rory Collings who took the ball over the white wash, scoring his sixth try in a dozen outings this term.
Withy then went in search of the bonus point that a fourth try would bring and it was soon secured as winger Jimmy Holman skipped through the home defensive ranks before enjoying a clear run over 15 yards to the line.
The home side hit back looking to be the side to complete the scoring in an entertaining contest. They did work themselves into a promising position, but, when a score looked likely, an infringement in the maul rescued Withy as they earned themselves a penalty which was quickly taken and kicked off the pitch to bring an end to the game.
On Saturday (January 11) Withycombe are back in home action when they host Dartmouth (2.30pm) in what is the first of three Raleigh Park matches for the Green and Blacks over the coming weeks.