RUGBY: Minety defy Devizes to go second

Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard: Minety's Dale Langdown Minety's Dale Langdown

MINETY moved up to second in the league with a hard-fought bonus point win at Devizes.

Dorset & Wilts Div 1 North

Devizes II 15

Minety 29

The two sides observed a minute’s silence before the game to honour the passing of Devizes stalwart and club president Les Dowse.

Minety scored first with a penalty goal from skipper Jack Ward, but Devizes fly half Gareth Davies soon replied in kind.

After that, neither team were able to score until late in the half, when Minety’s Pete Hazell pounced on a loose ball. He broke two tackles before offloading to fly half Tom Fitzcharles. He in turn drew the last defender and then slipped the ball to scrum half Duncan Simpson, who went over for a try; Ward converted to make it 3-10.

With only a minute left until the break, Tom Windle caught the restart on his 22 and set off with an intensity which took Devizes by surprise. His speed, side-step and hand-off took him through five tackles before Davies hauled him down five metres short of the line. Quick rucking kept the move alive and when Simpson whisked the ball to Fitzcharles, he was over before the home team could stop him. Ward’s conversion made it 3-17 at half-time.

Playing on the wing, despite a recent career at prop, Martin Coe added to Minety’s score five minutes into the second half with a 30-metre dash that capped a series of swift rucks.

He swerved past two defenders and brushed off two more before touching down in the corner.

Devizes came back strongly, camping on their opponents’ line. Under pressure in the scrum, Minety repeatedly offended and the referee awarded a penalty try. Davies’ easy conversion made it 10-22.

Minety moved Dale Langdown to fly half, where his pace and vision created many attacking opportunities. When Devizes spilled possession having apparently halted the visitors’ latest sally, flanker Steve Brown grabbed the ball and plunged for the line. Tackled just short, he popped a pass to Simpson who landed the try.

Another good kick from Ward made it 10-27 but Devizes had the last word.

Winning scrum ball just inside their own half, they moved it out to centre Craig Hurcombe. He drew his man and then offloaded to full back Eddy Darragh, who went over for the final try of the game.

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