It was a beautiful day for open running rugby,…..just not at Minehead. In conditions that can only be described as bottomless Taunton took on Minehead and, attacking down the hill in the first half, opened the scoring inside 2 minutes when Bran“Gazelle” Crampton gassed the winger out wide…the try was not converted. Almost straight from the kick off Andrew “Frodo” Farley burst clear and wisely chose to ignore Paul“Negative” Ford and gave the ball to Tom “NFA” Stanley who scored the second try…the try was not converted.
The Wanderers can never be said to be consistent when it comes to match day numbers and it was clear from the kick off that with only one substitute it was going to be a long hard shift in the rain for both forwards and backs…no one had the balls to tell George “Milk float” Cooper that though…
It was within ten minutes the one substitute was deployed when Rich “Turkey” Hodges came down awkwardly in a line out and had to go off with what looks like an injury to the knee that kept Turkey out for a year, fingers are crossed for a speedy recovery and we look forward to having you back in the squad soon….albeit maybe with the camera next time to be safe!
With a dominant scrum Taunton were in charge of the restarts and it was from a 5 metre scrum that Taunton scored the next. Paul “Negative”Ford inexplicably picked up from the base of a forward moving scrum and set offtowards the housing estate at the end of the pitch…luckily remembering to ground the ball first…the try was not converted. Feedback afterwards was that Paul had got confused with the white lines as the ball was over the try line when he picked it up!
Tom “NFA” Stanley then grabbed his second and Taunton’s 4th try with some good hands from the Taunton backline setting Tom up in a 1 on 1 and his pace was enough to seal an excellent finish out wide…the try was not converted. Taunton then showed off a party piece that has been a bedrock of the season to date. From inside their own 22 the forwards caught a line out and mauled up to half way where Minehead infringed. The penalty kick to touch saw another catch and drive and then breaking of the back of the maul Shane “Pine Tree” Jordan chose not to take the easy option and pass having drawn 4 defenders to him…and carried all 4 over the line with him to register history…we were all surprised to see the try converted.
By this point all the Taunton forwards and backs were uniting in support running and George “Milk Float” Cooper caught the next kickoff and was immediately speared by the first Minehead chaser. 60 yards later however the milk float was still trundling and several off loads later Paul“Negative” Ford scored his second.
In the terrible conditions Joe “Centre in a Prop’s Body”Bussell was looking remarkably clean but that was to change as he raised eyebrows on both sides by skinning the full back to then swan dive in for a try just to get his shirt dirty…the try was not converted. The Minehead full back commented on Joe’s way past that he was surprised at the pace that Bussell generated (well we hope that’s what he meant from his two word outburst). Not to be outdone Ben “the Butcher” Warwicker then supported excellently to poach his try…having dived for the try line from the 5 yard line Ben was still aqua planning towards the fence and only stopped 1 yard short…we were all disappointed by this…the try was not converted. 0-42 at half time.
To their huge credit Minehead rallied at half time and started the second half as the stronger side, registering the first score of the second half and converting it brilliantly from near the touchline. Taunton were in a real dog fight for most of the second half and tired bodies were being asked to repeatedly make hit after hit. The Milk Float was looking longingly to the touchline for a replacement and the coaches were avoiding eye contact with him! Taunton scored their only try of the second half when Joe“Centre in a Props Body” crashed over for his second try and Taunton’s 9th try, a try much more befitting the frame.…the try was not converted.
Final score 7-47 and given the conditions a great game of rugby. George “Milk Float” Cooper did comment on the final whistle that he has never played in a game with so many scrums before!