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Match Report: Trowbridge v Drybrook

Match Report: Trowbridge v Drybrook

Ali Lund8 May - 15:12
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Trowbridge Papa Johns Cup run comes to an end at Semi Final Stage

Match report courtesy of Alistair Morrison


After defeating Wadebridge Camels the previous week, Trowbridge travelled to Drybrook in the Forest of Dean for this Papa Johns semi final match. They were without place kicker Tom Weaver and second row Gareth Davis and centre Alex Murchison was injured in the Wadebridge match. They were also without wings Alex Christopher and Jordan Pretorius, and James McFarlane withdrew on the morning of the match. This meant that only four of the backs in the squad the previous week were available. Rory Murchison moved to centre and produced an almost seamless performance to brother Alex.

Drybrook had beaten Thornbury at home 52-14 in the quarter final and were well placed to take this tie, but Trowbridge started well with an early Archie Robertson penalty and a try from Rory Murchison. Drybrook responded when flanker Bailey Watts forced his way over after a scrum but the conversion failed. Soon after Drybrook lost a prop to a yellow card for a high tackle with the home side pleading that the player was too small to commit such an offence and this resulted in further criticism of the Somerset referee from home support. Trowbridge were the next to score when they went over following a line out with No 8 Max Day touching down. Robertson converted with a fine kick from wide out, but Drybrook’s Sonny Greenwood kicked a penalty on the stroke of half-time to make the score 15-8 at the interval.

Drybrook scored in the first minute of the second half with Bailey Watts scoring his second try and Greenman converted, before the home side were penalised for crossing after the kick off. This resulted in an attacking line out on the five yard line which Sam Hales won and Max Day scoring his second try to make the score 20-15 to the visitors.

Both sides had opportunities and Drybrook conceded a yellow card, but they scored when captain and No 8 Mitch Bourne crossed the whitewash to take the lead for the first time 22-20. Trowbridge had a penalty opportunity but Matthew Simpson’s kick went wide before Drybrook winger Ryan Chappell scored for Drybrook with the last move of the match.

This was a good performance by Trowbridge with the restricted availability and some of the reserve strength of the squad look good to challenge for places in the squad next season.

Head Coach Ali Lund said "It was a strange afternoon as on the one hand I am incredibly disappointed to lose the match and miss out on the team playing in the cup final when we had opportunities to win the game. However there is no doubt we were very stretched as a squad this week with so many players injured or unavailable to play. I was incredibly impressed with the resolve, determination and skills demonstrated by the guys selected to play. It is a shame the season is drawing to a close as it feels like the penny has dropped that when we are physically and emotionally prepared we are a match for any side at this level. We will review the season with the players and it will be interesting to see how far they are willing to go for us to become even more successful."

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