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BARFC 39, Camborne 25 (13/12/14)

| 13/12/2014 | Reply

Match report by Tony Pomeroy

 This was a scintillating game of rugby – a ten try fiesta – with Bridgwater taking the spoils and leap-frogging Camborne into third place in the league. This was Bridgwater’s sixth consecutive league victory and the ninth in total in the first half of the season.

Bridgwater made only one change from this side that won at Matson last week, Oscar Tregenna coming in on the wing for Garryn Basson. Nick Spellissy, recently returned from the USA, was on the bench with Adrian Tew and Jonathon Hill.


Bridgwater’s forwards dominated the first quarter of the game. After only four minutes, a Bridgwater forward drive at a scrum totally disrupted the visiting pack and Taylor Buller got the touchdown near the posts leaving Chris Ashwin with an easy conversion.

Jervis Manupenu put Bridgwater back on the offensive with a 75m kick that reached touch almost on the corner flag.  Camborne repulsed the first attack and cleared their lines for a lineout 40m out. Bridgwater’s pack again drove forward and suddenly Joe Bussell appeared in the clear, ball in hand. He ran well and slipped the ball to Matt Hastie who crossed near the posts. Ashwin again converted.

From the kick off, James Bryant gathered the ball and, showing remarkable speed for a prop, made progress before passing to Hastie. He was stopped, but Bridgwater recycled the ball to the right where Rob Allen still had a lot of work to do before getting the third try – this time unconverted – in the corner.

Wing Alex Ducker made a good run for Camborne before Bridgwater again pressed. When the home side moved the ball left, Manupenu sliced through under the posts only to realise that the referee had not played advantage and instead had awarded Bridgwater a penalty that eventually came to nothing.

Camborne came back into the game, exerting pressure of their own.  When Bridgwater lost the ball in a tackle in their own 22, David Mankee picked up and scored the opening try for Camborne. He failed to convert his own try.

Bridgwater hit back immediately with an excellent move by the backs ending in a try by James Martin in the corner. Ashwin’s conversion went over via the bar.


Camborne narrowed the gap when a concerted forward drive saw flanker, James Goldsworthy, score wide out. Mankee converted with an excellent kick.

Just before half time, Bridgwater lost Ali Blundell to a yellow card.  The half time score was 26-12.

Camborne narrowed the lead at the start of the second half when another forward drive saw hooker, Sam Bartle, score an unconverted try but Ashwin extended the home lead with a simple penalty.

Nick Spellissy replaced Rob Thompson for Bridgwater but Camborne narrowed the gap when they moved the ball left for Rob Thirlby to score an unconverted try in the corner.

Bridgwater hit back and saw their chance when Camborne No8 David Roberts was sent to the bin.  However, when a home attack broke down, Camborne put together a good move to take play into the Bridgwater 22. Despite being shorthanded, Camborne continued to press and were helped when home hooker Hastie also went to the bin.  Mankee kicked an easy penalty to make it 29-25 with about 12 minutes to play.

Bridgwater then woke up and scored two short-handed, and unconverted, tries to seal victory.  Firstly an intricate backs move saw Stu Heal sell an outrageous dummy before scoring with a flamboyant dive. Secondly,  at a scrum on the Camborne 10m line, Buller somehow managed to wrestle the ball from Camborne hands, found himself in space, and raced the 40m to the line for a final score of 39-25. Bridgwater gained five points and Camborne had to be content with a four try bonus point.


The Bridgwater supporters went through a range of emotions during this game. At 19-0 up after only 10 minutes, they sensed an easy victory but with Camborne scoring either side of half time, doubts began to creep in. As the penalty count mounted against Bridgwater in the second half, fingernails began to disappear. At 29-25, they began to think the unthinkable!  The roar that greeted Heal’s try resounded throughout the town and the roar of relief when Buller got his second try was even louder.

The pack were very much on top in the first quarter, pushing the Camborne eight all over the park, but parity was restored in the second and third quarters. Only when a seven man home scrummage completely disrupted the Camborne eight in the closing minutes did their self belief re-assert itself. The forwards ran well with the ball in hand and some of the handling was superb. James Bryant made a number of telling runs with the ball in hand as did his front row partners Matt Hastie and Joe Bussell. As ever, skipper Ollie Dunn was everywhere. The rest more than played their parts, particularly in the linesout and the loose.

The backs ran well with the ball in hand and looked very sharp, benefitting from the cool, old head at fly half, Jervis Manupenu. This was a very good team performance by Bridgwater and augers well for the second half of the season which kicks off at Thornbury next Saturday. Bridgwater will be looking for their first double of the season having beaten the Gloucestershire side at home in September.

The first home game of the New Year sees Avonmouth OB visit College Way on January 3rd when Bridgwater will be out to avenge a narrow defeat at Avonmouth earlier in the season.


Scorers :

Bridgwater & Albion              
Tries: Martin, Allen, Heal, Hastie, Buller (2)
Cons:  Ashwin (3)
Pen:    Ashwin


Tries:  Thirlby, Mankee, Bartle,  Goldsworthy
Con:   Mankee
Pen:    Mankee


Bridgwater Team:

James Martin, Rob Allen, Chris Ashwin, Stu Heal, Oscar Tregenna, Jervis Manupenu, Roger Drabble,  James Bryant, Matt Hastie,  Joe Bussell,  Ali Blundell,  Dan Kemmish,  Rob Thompson ( rep Nick Spellissy, 51), Ollie Dunn (Capt), Taylor Buller.

Reps not used :  Adrian Tew,  Jonathon Hill

Referee:               Wayne Davis (Somerset)

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Category: 1st XV News, Previews / Reports -XV

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