Withycombe contribute to their own downfall at Newquay
PUBLISHED: 19:22 06 March 2013 | UPDATED: 19:22 06 March 2013
Newquay Hornets 24, Withycombe 20
Withycombe came home from Cornwall feeling that they only had themselves to blame for their latest away loss, Mike Richards.
The hosts drew first blood as they pounced on a fumbled Withycombe lineout to score an early try. Withycombe nearly struck with a counterpunch as the returning Neil Williams seized a loose ball to feed Jack Pugsley with nothing but 70 metres of grass between him and the try line.
Alas, the attack broke down and the ensuing penalty was missed, but Withycombe would not be down for long. From a Mike Symons quick tap, Withycombe recycled the ball and moved it wide for Neil Williams to bundle over taking several players with him. Pugsley slotted the conversion to make it 7-5.
The momentum then swung in the opposite direction as Newquay missed a penalty of their own before scoring a breakaway try to lead 10-7. Pugsley replied with a penalty kick to make the halftime score 10-all.
Withycombe struck first in the second half as quick ball gave Kevin Rodwell the chance to cross the whitewash, Pugsley again converting. At 17-10 Withycombe finally looked in control, with the set pieces looking strong and patient phase play allowing them to dictate the pace of the game.
All that went awry in the final 15 minutes, as another Pugsley penalty was book-ended by two opportunistic Newquay tries, both kick-started with missed touch-finding kicks. Withycombe’s edge in seeing out close games, so vital to their 10-game winning streak after Christmas last season, seems to have eluded them recently.
High-flying Tiverton travel to Raleigh Park this Saturday which shall no doubt prove to be another test of Withycombe’s nerve.