Another clean sheet for Tawts against higher opposition
NORTH TAWTON 25
NEW CROSS 0
THE North Tawton charge continued in a more than positive manner after making amends for their narrow first leg loss two weeks earlier.
Not only did the hosts turn around a four point deficit into a comfortable 21 point aggregate win, but they achieved another clean sheet against higher opposition – bringing the total to four in five games.
With New Cross arriving with little time to warm up, Tawts felt a solid start was needed to capitalise on the guests blip in preparation. A solid start is what they achieved.
It took only four minutes for the first points of the game to be scored as C Dennis slotted an early penalty chance 35 metres from the sticks.
This proved to be an early confidence booster as it was on the 10 minutes mark that the first try was scored; Cornthwaite breaking free and swatting aside any would-be tacklers in what is quickly becoming a trademark regularity.
C Dennis converted the extras before being asked to kick at goal again moments later.
A missed clearance from the kick off saw W Sharp put brother Ben clear through on a 40 metre race to the line only to be cut down short, leaving the visitors with no choice but to infringe. This brought to score to 13 – 0 to North Tawton in as many minutes.
With territory and possession very much in the home sides favour, New Cross made few first half visits into the North Tawton "22" however the pattern of minutes on the clock mirroring points scored unfortunately did not maintain as New Cross found their feet and offered some resistance to the Tawton surge.
It was not until the stroke of half-time that the scorers were troubled again as a string of well-secured phases saw Ayris latch on to a well-worked backs move and cross the whitewash, making a half-time score of 18-0.
With the standard of rugby being set in the first half, few words of wisdom were needed at half-time as it seemed that complacency would be New Cross's only way back into the game.
Unlike the first half, the second half did see Tawts defend for lengthy periods at a time; the much larger pack of New Cross attacked around the fringes but were met by some strong defence from Phillips, Kerswill and Madden to name a few.
The pressure did eventually take its toll as Tawton lost C Dennis to the sin bin for a professional foul in the red zone, however, the main advantage was not exploited as the visitors tally remained at nil.
With the promising Baker taking a knock and no regular front row replacement in the side, it took the heroics of converted prop Henshaw to front up with the work horses.
With his addition and Wilkin, and Hancock entering the fray, the fresh legs were enough to take Tawton through to the finish line.
With seconds to play and a realisation of a second round Cup game approaching, North Tawton sealed their win with a fine breakaway try.
Letherbridge slipped through a couple of midfield tackles and put Sharp senior through on a mazey run under the posts to bring the final score to 25-0.
Tomorrow, Saturday, November 15, North Tawton First Fifteen are back in league action and travel to the improving Plymouth Victoria.
The club are also pleased to announce a return of Second team rugby as they travel to take on Bideford Thirds.
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