Wells 27 Taunton Warriors 63

Article published:
April 2, 2024

Taunton earned their twentieth win of the season by scoring 10 tries and a drop goal which took their points tally for the season to 1190, which is an average of 59 points per game. Whilst this may seem a comfortable win the Warriors were made to work hard for all of their scores and for the first fifteen minutes of the game Wells were completely dominant.

The Warriors had very little possession at the start of the game with Wells seeming to be well organised and attacking the Warriors line.  On5-minutes a well worked moved gave Wells the opening try and they were 5-pointsin the lead.  This was extended just2-minutes later when the Warriors gave away a third penalty which Wells opted to convert giving them an 8-point lead. From the kick off Wells came back on the attack, denying the Warriors any possession and it was not until 17-minutes that Alex Rodd stripped the Wells player of possession and made a break through the centre up to the Wells22 metre line where he was able to hand on to Andy England in support to finish  off  the move for the try which was converted by Ben Alvis, putting the Warriors to within one-point of Wells.  The Warriors were now earning some possession and moving the ball wide but some stern defence by Wells were denying the Warriors the score.  Wells defence was eventually broken when Oli Brown with very little room produced a dummy, a side step to beat one player another sidestep to beat the second and score in the corner, to give the Warriors the lead. Taunton pressed again from the kick off but Wells managed to clear their lines with a kick to touch on the Warriors 22 metre line.  Oliver Wrelton rose high in the line to win a superb ball and to feed back to Charlie Way at scrum half only for the Wells prop to come through the lineout to intercept the pass and score the try which Wells converted, giving them the lead again. This lead did not last long and within a minute Ben Alvis charged down a Wells clearance kick to collect the ball and score the try which he converted.  The Warriors 4th,and bonus point try was probably the try of the afternoon.  Alex Rodd took a ball from the ruck and burst through three tacklers handing on to Oli Schuster-Wood who raced to the Wells 22 metre line before passing on to Henry Webb who fed his wing Oli Brown to score his second try of the game.  The Warriors were now having more possession and moving the ball wide and Josh Guest was able to make a break through the centre before passing on to Ben Alvis for the try.  On the stroke of halftime, we saw Evan Smalldon playing only his second game in senior rugby, make an electric run on his wing and when stopped short of the line he was able to hand on to prop Jo Atkins to score in the corner.  This gave the Warriors a halftime lead of 34-points to 15.

The second half started with Wells taking the ball from the Taunton kick off and racing up the wing to score their third try.  From the next kick off the Warriors were more astute containing the Wells attack and turning over the ball.  Several drives saw Jo Atkins burst through and score the try which Ben converted to take the Taunton score to beyond the 40-points mark.  The front row union were making great inroads into the Wells defence and with the third quarter of the game almost over hooker Harry Hodge laid the ball back, Alex Rodd picked and drove through, Jo Atkins continued the drive to hand on to Oli Schuster-Wood who finished the move. Just three-minutes later and we saw some of the class of Henry Webb whose vision for the gap was rewarded when he used his pace to make the break and score under the posts for Ben to convert. However, Wells were not quite down and out and managed to break through the Warriors defence for their fourth try of the afternoon and a try bonus point from the game. With just one minute of the game left scrum half Charlie Way went in in the corner for the Warriors tenth try of the game and the 60-points.  Wells kicked off and the Warriors drove into the Wells half.  The ball came back to Ben Alvis on the Wells 10 metre line where he lined himself up to make a drop at goal which was successful and took the game to its end and the Warriors 63-points.

This coming Saturday, the 6thof April will be the Warriors last game of the season.  They have already won the league, gaining 100 league points.  They have provided us with some flare and entertainment.  For most it is only their second season in Senior Men’s rugby, for some their first and for the rest a few more.  Two of them have made the Somerset Team.  They are showing us just how good our junior sections are to be able to send through such talent and the foundations given by the coaches of the Junior’s should be recognised in the achievements of this team. This Saturday we will be celebrating the achievements of this team and I would like to make a request of all of our loyal Taunton Rugby Club Supporters to come down and join those celebrations. Fill the stands, cheer the players, encourage them to win, become the sixteenth man and intimidate the opposition by your support for the team, and get them over the 1200-points mark for the season.  Stay and talk to the players after the game, the bar will be staying open, celebrate with them what must be classed as a superb achievement for Rugby in Taunton and for the Club as a whole.  Let’s say a big thank you to all of the players who have played for the Warriors during this season, who have been tremendous ambassadors for our club and rugby in general.  They are playing against Avon with a 14.30pm kick off and the pasty shack will be open. Please come and support us.

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