Tribute Western Counties North.
Cirencester 6 Hornets 19.
CIRENCESTER welcomed table-toppers Hornets having been on the receiving end of a drubbing in the earlier away fixture with the Weston-super-Mare side.
The first 20 minutes was a tight, physical affair, with Ciren’s pack functioning better in the line-out compared to the previous week and they took the fight to the bigger Weston forwards. However, after sustained pressure in the scrum, the referee gave a penalty try after an infringement by scrum half Darren Moore. The extras were added.
The weather then changed, wind and rain allowing Ciren to keep pinning the Hornets back with precise kicking from James Fisher and Moore, one such foray resulting in a successful penalty attempt by Fisher.
Ciren were now starting to get a grip on the game. The centre partnership of Dave Evans and Rory McCarthy were strong in defence, the latter also making a magnificent try-saving tackle after a Weston line-break.
With the conditions worsening, Hornets kept the play tight and kicked for the corners when possible. One such line-out resulted in a catch and drive with the Weston prop scoring in the corner.
The second half was all Cirencester and they were rewarded with an early penalty which Fisher converted. However, ill-discipline was to be their downfall, with winger Ed Alderman sent to the sin-bin for not rolling away.
Hornets then made a rare break into the Ciren half and scored a converted try in the corner. Further ill-discipline followed with replacement Ben Rayola sent to the sidelines for almost decapitating a Weston forward; Rory McCarthy soon followed, although the Hornets ensured they left their calling card on his back.
With Ciren down to 13 men, the Hornets tried to score a fourth try for the bonus point but the strong home defence ensured this wasn’t to be.
MoM: Alex Hammond.