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Hogs Continue Winning Run

Tony Smith  Monday, October 08, 2001  14:56 GMT

Bournemouth 2XV having been unable to raise a side, Devizes travelled to Salisbury and played against Wheatsheaf Cabin Crew. Skipper Paul Dyton was keen to continue the winning run and a mixed performance at least achieved this aim.

Devizes started the game appearing to think they only had to turn up to win. Wheatsheaf had different ideas: a reasonable pack put Devizes under pressure; and the stand off dropped a goal in front of the posts to go 3 – 0 up. Wheatsheaf continued to pressure Devizes but turnover ball was kept alive well and Darren Penny forced his way over in the corner. James Booth just missed the conversion.

Wheatsheaf continued to put Devizes under pressure and a high kick on the Devizes 22m line was missed, leading to a 5m scrum. A good Devizes shove disrupted the Wheatsheaf pack and Doug Bryant cleared. Just before half time, pressure by Devizes lead to a 5m scrum but over-elaboration lead to a knock on and Wheatsheaf were able to clear. A half time score of 5 – 3 to Devizes was unsatisfactory but Devizes did not deserve any more.

Devizes performed better in the second half and Darren Penny was able to score 2 more tries. The first came after Devizes capitalised on turnover ball again and the second try followed some good three-quarter play. These scores were split by a Tim Kamei try, after an excellent break by James Booth plus some well recycled ball.

Highlight of the game was a 50m gallop down the field by Mike ‘Giraffe’ Tipple. Using the old Ian Cook technique and coming back in defence from 20m behind play, Mike Tipple received a pass from a Wheatsheaf player – who clearly did not believe a Devizes player could be that far behind play. Tipple took the ball, turned on a sixpence and set off for the Wheatsheaf goal line. Urged on from the touchline by substitute, Will Crosby, with “Take him on, Giraffe!”, Tipple attempted to run through the 4’ 6” fullback, but was forced into touch – his 50m run coming to nothing. Mike exclaimed “I was looking for support but I couldn’t see anyone. Where were you?” Paul Dyton replied “I was right there, on your shoulder, Mike!” But then the skipper’s judgement of distance always has been a bit suspect.

Wheatsheaf scored a consolation try before Darren Penny’s final score. Meanwhile, Dave Maundrell had to leave the field after a bang to the head. A final score of 24 – 8 was another win for Devizes 2XV but, as Manager Tony Smith commented in his post-match analysis, “The merry men will need to play with more urgency and conviction to continue their winning ways”. He added “I look forward to more rampant running from Mike Tipple in future and I’m sure he’ll be working hard on his side-step in training on Tuesday and Thursday evenings”.

Devizes 2XV will take on one of thir toughest challenges ever, when they play Walcot Old Boys away, in the second match of their first Bath Combination League season next Saturday, 13 October.

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