Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Devonport Services 32, Honiton RFC 3
Honiton slumped to a disappointing 32-3 defeat at Devonport Services on Saturday afternoon. With the game balanced at 8-3 at half time Honiton looked as though they were in with a shout, but the game got away from the Lacemen in the third quarter, writes Nick Guilbert.
With conditions a little greasy, Honiton kicked off to the Plymouth side before giving away four penalties in a row. Honiton had spoken before the game about the importance of not giving away penalties but it went out the window immediately.
They were forced to defend their five metre line for a few moments before Devonport made a hash of two clear cut chances to let Honiton off the hook. The Lacemen escaped just three points to the bad, which given the nature of the start was not too bad.
They then made their own inroads and won a penalty of their own which Meadows converted well to bring the scores level.
Honiton did start to dictate the territory of the game at this stage but made more chronic errors, basic mistakes and needless penalties. Meadows was sin binned for a ill timed challenge, taking a player in the air, and Honiton never got going. The scrummage was relatively stable and shows signs of steady improvement, but the lineout was a backwards step from last week as they struggled to secure their own ball, or disrupt the oppositions.
As it was the Servicemen broke down the left after some sustained pressure in the tight to allow their winger to cross in the corner for an unconverted effort.
Honiton knew at half time that if they could just start to string some phases together they should be able to win the fixture, but in failing to gather the re-start they allowed Devonport to acquire a line out just outside the twenty two. The Plymouth side won the lineout and following a couple of phases they broke through down the right hand channel. A good interchange by the outside centre and winger saw the former cross in the corner for a five pointer.
It was another poor start for Honiton who now had to score twice to regain the lead. They pressed on, but Honiton were not as street wise as they should have been and Dalton and the home side’s eight were binned when a melée started. Honiton coughed up possession in promising areas a number of times and it cost them dear as the Plymothians broke through the centre field, and once behind the Lacemen they shipped the ball wide for their number 12 to score to the right of the posts.
Honiton were in trouble and started to throw the ball around in a bid to get back into the game quickly. This back fired as their personal errors were still too high, and they fell further behind as the home side scored twice through counter attacks to pour salt in the wounds of the East Devon side.
It was a day to forget for the Lacemen, but they must re-build quickly to ensure they are ready for next weeks game against Exeter Saracens.