Narrow success for Cricklade RFC at Combe Down
11:14am Monday 10th September 2012 in Sport
Dorset/Wilts Div 2 North.
Combe Down II 15 Cricklade 22.
A CRICKLADE team missing some first-team regulars defended with great determination to win their opening league match of the season at Combe Down.
The hosts had five points on the board after only five minutes when a speculative kick forward hit an offside player and dropped into the path of another runner who collected and cantered over unopposed.
There were numerous other strange moments throughout the game, but Cricklade benefited from one that involved a soft interception by Nathan Waite who worked a great one-two with Mike Murray before releasing Aaron Watkins to score wide on the left. Waite secured the other points with a great kick from an acute angle. Cricklade extended their lead when Dan Bown went on wandering run before passing to Waite, who broke a couple of tackles before putting Wayne Anderson through to score on the right.
There then followed some ugly exchanges but half-time came allowing both sides time to cool down.
The second half was another lively affair with far too much enthusiasm and not enough skill on display.
When the breakthrough came, it went Cricklade's way; harassed Combe players crossed in front of their own posts when trying to clear their lines and Waite stepped forward to convert the easy penalty.
From the restart, the same untidy and frustrating broken play continued until it was Combe Down who benefited from a poor Cricklade line-out and took charge of a bobbling ball to score.
Cricklade decided to sit back and protect their lead and the standard of defence on display was impressive. But sheer weight of numbers combined to force the ball over as time expired and Combe then threw away the other points by taking a drop conversion and hitting the bar.