Honiton Colts impress

PUBLISHED: 09:35 24 February 2010 | UPDATED: 00:58 16 June 2010

Honiton Colts powered home against Exmouth

Honiton Colts powered home against Exmouth

Honiton's visitors in the league this week were high flying Exmouth. Honiton are a side on a roll at the moment and have only lost once since Christmas, writes Jason Fahy.

Honiton Colts 12, Exmouth 3

Honiton's visitors in the league this week were high flying Exmouth. Honiton are a side on a roll at the moment and have only lost once since Christmas, writes Jason Fahy.

In front of a large home crowd, they produced an excellent performance, putting together some dazzling phases of rugby and the second try was out of the top drawer.

Skipper Rice correctly elected to kick up the slope and prepare his defence for the likely onslaught from the visitors. The troops responded to the challenge, soaking up a lot of early pressure from strong runners and they won more than their fair share of ball at the breakdown. Meadows commanded the pack well from nine and produced a balanced display sharing ball in hand with tactical kicking. Honiton's normally reliable line-out was the only facet of play that was a bit of an issue and in terms of perfection this will be the focus for training this week. Not withstanding this, Honiton maintained a rock solid defence and ended the half arguably the better side but, with a 0-0 scoreline, it was all to play for. Exmouth's tactics of kicking the ball long down the middle of the field must have been the subject of a re-think by their coaching staff as skipper Rice and wings Lee Clark and Josh Wood returned each with interest and performed well as a unit.

The second half saw Honiton confidence grow with the slope advantage and they took the game to the opposition and started to dictate the play. However, it was Exmouth who broke the duck with a well struck penalty but this only seemed to strength the resolve and Honiton pressed. A quickly released ball saw quick hands deliver the ball to "try machine" Josh Wood (his ninth try of the season) who burst through a crowd of defenders to take Honiton into a 5-3 lead, much to the delight of the home crowd.

As the game went on Honiton looked much the stronger and, with Rice continually turning defence into attack with his trademark side-step, Honiton seemed favourites to score. Some might say Rice is wasted at full-back but his kicking from hand, ferocious tackling and general cover play suggests otherwise!

After the Lacemen's hard working forwards had turned over another Exmouth ball at a ruck, Meadows sent a long pass to fly-half Gould, who released the impressive Ollie Hyland on a scissors move. He burst over the gain-line and was hauled down but managed to slip the ball to the supporting Gould who carried and, when tackled, produced the pass of the day to pop the ball up to Rice. He'd arrived at pace and there was no stopping him from diving over to score a fantastic team try. Meadows added the conversion to stretch the lead to 12-3 and this put the game beyond doubt. This was a very accomplished team performance with all the lads giving it their all. Paul Harrandance was singled out for the Man of the Match award.

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