Hard-hitting Ciren see off Bristol Harlequins
4:05pm Monday 15th October 2012 in Sport
Tribute Western Counties North.
Cirencester 24 Bristol Harlequins 15.
A SUPERB late solo try by Rhys Owen helped Ciren secure a hard-fought victory over Bristol Harlequins.
Ciren started quickly and cancelled out an early Harlequins penalty via Gareth Parry’s right boot.
Soon after the restart, James Fisher at centre cut a fantastic line through the middle of the Quins’ defence and was in under the posts. Veteran Parry added the extra two points.
Ciren continued to press but couldn’t make the final pass count.
The Bristol side rallied as the half wore on and, after Ciren tighthead Olly Stuart left the field injured, the home scrum was pushed over their line by a powerful effort. The conversion left the scores level.
The game ebbed and flowed for the remainder of the half until a scorching 50-metre run by full back Rory McCarthy brought the crowd to their feet. A sidestep followed by a burst of acceleration and a strong hand-off took him clear of the defence and a try was only prevented by a marvellous covering tackle. The home forwards smashed into the ruck in a bid to keep the move going but somehow the Quins were able to clear.
In the dying moments of the half, Ciren failed to prevent the opposition forwards from building momentum with a driving maul and they were punished by conceding a soft try to the Bristol prop. The second half was a different story with the home side adjusting their game plan to exploit the Quins’ weaknesses. This was rewarded instantly with a penalty try after a deliberate knock on by the away side; a yellow card was also shown giving Ciren an advantage. Parry nailed the conversion.
Ciren dominated the physical exchanges with some big hits being handed out courtesy of the back row trio of Alex Hammond, James Renowden and Will McCarthy; prop Luke Fisher also contributed. This commitment was rewarded in the final moments by a fine solo effort from replacement Owen, who danced and boshed his way through the tackles to score under the posts, wrapping up a superb victory. Parry added the conversion to seal the win. MoM: Ian Barber