Chard get boost to play-off hopes with win at Clevedon and results from elsewhere
Clevedon 13, Chard 28 Chard did their South West Division One play-off hopes no harm at all with this bonus point victory at Clevedon.
Chard were also helped by some very strange results in the division with notably St Austell and North Petherton losing to teams at the lower end of the league.
Chard started the match with Joe Massey and Max Gosden coming in for Neil, Douglas and Richard Mouland
Chard began well and Clevedon were immediately on the back foot . They were caught offside and Chard Skipper Chris Doak goaled the resultant penalty. Chard kept up the pressure for the next five minutes or so but then they started to get overconfident. Their play became very casual indeed and they started to give away needless penalties. Mark Taylor kicked the first one on offer to bring the scores level after eleven minutes play and he then should have put his side ahead but missed what should have been a straight forward effort. By this time Chard had lost scrum half Ryan Helliar to the sin bin for ten minutes and Clevedon were going through a good spell helped in no small measure by some incredibly sloppy play and odd decision making particularly by the Chard backs.
On the half hour Chard at last played to their superiority in the forwards and following a five metre scrummage Jim Wagstaff powered over for their first try.
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Chard were continuing to give away penalties and it was hardly surprising that Taylor reduced the arrears for the home side with another successful kick shortly before the half time whistle.
Clevedon lost a player to the bin at the beginning of the second half and were made to pay when winger Jack Pennington finished off a good move after several phases of play.
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Chard skipper Doak, who, by his own high standards had had a very indifferent gam,e started to pull the strings more effectively and the best move of the match resulted in centre Lee Massey going over in the left hand corner for a splendid try which was converted to put Chard 14 points clear.
Chard were now within one try of getting the all important bonus point and this duly came when following another sin binning offence by the home side Chard player coach Simon Jenkins sneaked over from a well rehearsed lineout move..
The game which had never been dirty than flared up when Clevedon centre Joe Williams picked up a red card and then Wagstaff was sent to the bin for deliberately knocking the ball on.
Chard went further ahead with another successful penalty from the boot of their skipper.
In the dying seconds Chard centre Joe Massey became the second player to pick up a red card in the match.
There was still time for one more score and this came in the last play of the game when Clevedon were awarded a penalty try which Taylor converted.
On Saturday (April 12) Chard are at home to bottom side Coney Hill from Gloucester and any thoughts that this could be an easy game were soon dispelled when the news filtered through that they had beaten the very strong St Austell team. Kick off will be 3pm. Chard would urge as many supporters as possible to come down to cheer them on.
Chard Team;- Harrison, Roberts, L Massey, J Massey, Pennington, Doak, Helliar, Wagstaff, Wright, Parsons, Henly, Gosden, Aplin, Jenkins, Hyslop Replacements:- Robinson, Stead, Twigg ( all used)