Chard score three late ‘special’ tries to see off Paignton
PUBLISHED: 10:41 22 October 2018 | UPDATED: 10:41 22 October 2018
Chard maintained their unbeaten home record in this season’s Western Counties (W) campaign, beating Paignton 31-10, writes Glyn Hughes.
The contest was played out in perfect conditions and before a 200 plus crowd that was treated to a number of tries, three of them, all scored later in the contest, that would not have been out of pace at a much higher level!
Despite the final score, this contest was mighty close up until the final quarter which Chard went into holding a narrow 12-10 lead.
Indeed, at that stage of proceedings it did seem as if Paignton would go on and take something from the match – but then came those ‘special’ tries.
Chard, with several key players back after injury, started the match well and took the lead after only four minutes when, following some splendid play by the forwards, Joe Mainwaring sneaked his way over for an unconverted try.
From the restart Chard showed some inexperience by failing to clear the ball properly and also taking some risky options and it looked odds on that Paignton would square things up, but somehow Chard not only kept them out with some resolute defending for ten minutes, but went further ahead in their next excursion into the Paignton half when Dave Biss forced his way over for a try converted by Niall Crouch to make it 12-0.
Paignton hit back, punishing a Chard mistake and Dave Siddle crossed for a try converted by full back Mike Sandercock from the touch line.
The game was very competitive and even for the rest of the half and the interval was reached with Chard holding a 12-7 lead.
Paignton had the better of things in the early second half exchanges and a Sandercock penalty recued the points difference to two at 12-10.
Sandercock then looked set to put his side in front, but a great tackle in midfield by Emile Szydelko denied him.
Almost immediately the game changed with Chard scoring the first of three superb tries.
Deciding to run the ball from deep, the ball eventually found winger Szydelko, who beat his opposite number for pace with a terrific outside run and ran in fully 50 metres for a wonderful try which he converted himself.
From the restart Billy Biss made a lot of ground before passing to Ben Stead who ran a good line to create some space for Szydelko who went over for his second try.
Paignton looked shell shocked at this sudden change of fortune and were left chasing shadows when right wing Ross Colenso showed his terrific potential when he made a dynamic break to score a fifth try which was again converted..
As well as the scorers mention must be made of scrum half Geroge Russo who was another young player who had a very good game.
This was an excellent bonus point win for Chard, who must now surely trust that they can transfer their home form to the road.
Hopefully availability and players keeping free from injury will help them to start winning away from Essex Close.
Chard have a very young and inexperienced team and mistakes will happen at times, but they are learning more and improving with every game .
On Saturday (October 27), Chard travel to play Saltash, who were promoted into this division at the end of last season. This could well be the first time Chard have played Saltash who have not enjoyed the best of starts to their league campaign, but they have played several of the more fancied sides and only lost by two points to St Austell who are regarded as one of the strongest teams so they are not to be underestimated.