Chard RFC beaten by Wellington but it's still 'A Great Escape'

PUBLISHED: 11:00 15 April 2019

Honiton rugby action

Honiton rugby action

Archant

A crowd in excess of 350 turned up for the Chard versus wellington, local derby fixture, that had so much riding on it for both teams in terms of their respective tribute Western Counties (W) situations, writes Glyn Hughes.

However in the final analysis, despite the 43-12 success for Wellington, it would be results elsewhere that would determine the league positions for both teams.

Wellington needed to win and hope that Sidmouth or Crediton dropped points so they could sneak into the runners up position and get promotion through the play offs.

Unfortunately, as far as our visitors were concerned both of these teams had comprehensive wins and Wellington narrowly missed out and ended up in third place.

Chard needed to win to guarantee survival or Truro had to lose at Falmouth.

Truro were actually in front until the final seconds when Falmouth were awarded a penalty kick which was goaled to give them a narrow win which meant that Chard would stay up and Truro would be relegated along with Paignton.

Chard ended up just one point above Truro. The last minute try at Wadebridge last weekend gave them that extra point!

Wellington looked to be the best team that have played at Chard this season, and, although Chard gave a spirited performance throughout Wellington were able to really pull away in the final quarter to claim a thoroughly deserved victory.

Wellington took the lead with a try from Chris Kitto after only five minutes which was converted by Rob Hooper.

Jack Richards added a second try after 24 minutes and Kitto got his second not long before the interval. Both of these tries were unconverted, but Wellington led 17-0 at the interval.

Despite being behind, Chard were giving a good account of themselves and came back strongly at the beginning of the second half.

Emile Szydelko, who had claimed the vital bonus point at Wadebridge last week made a terrific run down the left and powered his way over in the corner. Niall Crouch added the conversion points to put Chard right back in the mix.

Nor long afterwards, the Chard forwards showed their strength when they forced their opposite numbers back and scrum half Ross Colenso went over for a second try for Chard. This was unconverted, but Chard were now within five points, just trailing 17-At this point it looked as if Chard would get something from the game as they were playing very well!

Wellington were, however, an outstanding team and had strength and pace throughout their side and this really came to the fore in the final quarter when they scored further tries from Richards, Cameron Venn, Liam Phillips and Dan Goldstone.

Hooper added three more conversions to seal a good win for the visitors..

They knew they had been in a game however, and the efforts of the entire Chard squad could not be faulted.

On their performance today it was difficult to understand why Wellington were not getting promoted and they will no doubt look back on missed opportunities in games which were drawn and not won.

Wonderful entertainment for the spectators and ‘The Great Escape’ for the Chard players!

There are no more league games, but next Saturday (April 20) the Chard Vets are away to Crewkerne Vets (3pm) and then, on Easter Monday, a Chard XV will play Holyrood Old Boys in the annual memorial match for former player Bill Morgan. With regard to the Bill Moragn game which kicks off at 2.30pm, players have been asked to donate something useful ie blanket, insulated mug, cutlery to a Somerset homeless Charity and the opportunity to donate will be extended to the spectators. More details can be got from larry.watkins@btinternet.com

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