|Bury St Edmunds||28||10||1||17||629||774||-145||16||58|
|London Irish Wild Geese||28||7||0||21||620||906||-286||18||46|
|15th January 2017||Junior Rugby KO 11am|
|21st January 2017||2nds V Ivybridge 230pm KO|
|21st January 2017||Colts V Newton Abbot 2ppm ko|
|22nd January 2017||Junior Rugby 11am KO|
|28th January 2017||1st V Redingensians 2pm ko|
Good afternoon ladies and gentleman and welcome to 2017 and Barnstaple Chiefs first home game of the new year in their continuing campaign in National 2 South. Today's opponents are the title chasing Chinnor and we extend a warm welcome to their players, coaches, committee members and supporters who have made the long trip from Oxfordshire and hope you have an enjoyable day here today.
We would also like to thank our sponsors for todays game Webbers and The Golden Oldies whose continued support for this club has been massive and of huge importance in helping us reach the heights we have and long may it continue.
Many of you will now be aware of the new high tackle directives which came into effect on 3rd January. These new laws are meant to address reckless and accidental tackles and coming in mid season have not really allowed players much time to adapt so expect a lot of penalties and yellow cards as coaches and players attempt to quickly figure out for themselves how to adapt. Hopefully though with time these laws will see a reduction of the high reckless tackles and lessen the risks although watching the premiership last weekend there seemed to be just as many concusions from tackling low as well.
Well 2017 got off to a nice start picking up 2 bonus points from our away trip to Canterbury. With Barnstaple leading at half time Canterbury took control with 3 quick tries just after the 50 minute mark but a great effort by The Chiefs in the last 10 minutes with tries from Ben Hilton and Ryan Carter secured the bonus points and lifted us above the bottom 3.
There now seems to be daylight between the 2 halfs of the league as the top half have now pulled 7 points clear of the rest and the rest of the season for the Chiefs looks increasingly a battle between 6 clubs. With home games against Exmouth Februuary 11th and Barnes March 4th being critical we have every fighting chance with already 5 wins behind us of winning this battle.
Today's opponents are the title chasing Chinnor who we know only too well. Firing on all cylinders at the start winning big they have stuttered of late winning only 2 of their last 7 fixtures and are winless in their last three with 2 draws and a loss. This has seen their fortunes drop to third place and will make them dangerous opponents as they try to rejuvenate their campaign.
Good luck to both teams today and I look forward to some exciting rugby and lets hear that Barum roar warm up the cold chill of January. See you at the bar later
To book into any of the above events please contact Lisa on 07725145781 / firstname.lastname@example.org
The following lucky members have won cash prizes in the 100 Club Draw made last Saturday in the clubhouse:-
Nov. £25 - 118 Darrell Gill £10 - 151 Malcombe Prowse
Dec. £25 - 155 Peter England £10 - 190 Brian Phipps
Best wishes to the winners - a good way to start 2017!
Ben Vellacott cheering on Ryan Carter and Josh Squires 2012 - 13 season
Former Barnstaple youth player Ben Vellacott made his Gloucester debut last weekend in their Aviva Premiership game against Worcestershire.
Replacing the injured Gloucester captain Greig Laidlaw at scrum-half just before half time, he had what was described as a sparkling second-half performance including setting up Charlie Sharples for a try in their 55-19 win.
Ben played Junior rugby at Barnstaple upto U16's stage and also played for Barnstaple Chiefs at scrum half during the 2012 -13 season. He also represented Devon at under-15 and under-18 levels and has been a member of both Exeter Chiefs and Worcester Warriors academies. Vellacott has also played for Scotland at U17 and U18 levels and made his Scotland under-20 debut off the bench against Ireland in January 2014, scoring his side's only try, in the final minutes. Now he can list the Aviva premiership to his tally.
Well done Ben and good luck for the future from everyone here at Barnstaple RFC.
Barnstaple v Chinnor 14 01 17
Despite the week’s heavy rain, hard work from the ground staff and a cold drying wind had helped prepare a fine surface for this midwinter encounter at Pottington Road. With memories of a 76-5 drubbing up in Oxfordshire earlier this season Barum knew they were up against a top table side with promotion ambitions.
And indeed the opening minutes spelled warnings in all directions as Chinnor quickly secured their kick off ball, recycled effectively and soon won a penalty on the 22. Confidently punting for touch the line out was taken, a swift two or three phases and 0-7. It all looked too easy, Nathan Hannay the man rumbling over for the visitors.
As the crowd feared the worst Barum quickly responded and demonstrated their confidence and improvement over the last two months by running hard and carrying through their opponents. A line break by Bryn Jenkins saw the ball spun left to Linford who almost made the tryline. A recycle inside saw the ball dug out at speed from the rucks and Will Topps had space on the opposite wing to cut inside and complete the move close to the posts: 7-7.
The next thirty five minutes saw some of the best rugby at home this season and possibly for some seasons as Steve Perry orchestrated his backs behind the breakdown, flashing the passes out right and left as the runners came from deep at speed. A break by Matt Gohl was stopped but the Chinnor backs had already come offside from the ruck and Isaac made no mistake with the penalty: 10-3.
End to end rugby with both sides exhibiting fine handling skills, excellent ball retention and incisive line breaks. A succession of dangerous Chinnor phases was held for a while before the defence finally cracked and recent Oxford University fly half, Basil Strang darted through for a try. 10-14.
Barnstaple now produced some of their best rugby of the season with an outstanding display of fizzing passing skills, teamwork, and recycled ball at pace. Ryan Carter and Jake Murphy were making big metres in midfield, the forwards were hitting the rucks and creating quick ball availability. Twice Linford broke left, only to be held on the line before a line out from a clearance kick was won by the patron suite and moved inside on the right. Will Topps cantered through but was held, the ball instantly flashed out to Gohly who was gathering momentum. In spite of the close attentions of his opposite No.5 the Barum lock stretched through the tackle for a deserved try: 15-14. A standing ovation from the home fans said it all as the teams left the pitch for the break.
The second half began at similar pace with breaks at both ends but Chinnor were ready with the wind to turn the game around. Intense pressure on the 22 seemed certain to yield a try for the visitors when a ruck broke up at the whistle. A red card for Chinnor flanker Richard Thorpe for stamping and a home penalty enabled Barum to clear.
Could Barum hold on? The 14 men of the Oxfordshire team pulled out all the stops and pounded the Barum 22. One “try” was disallowed for a knock on, another carry over the line was not touched down. Barum breathed again but were instantly smothered if they tried to break the stranglehold in their own half. A Chinnor penalty drifted wide. Was it to be Barum’s day and a dramatic win?
The minutes ticked. Chinnor pounded the home 22. Twice Barum broke clear, first Toppo, then Jake Murphy. On both occasions the temptation for the isolated runner to try and keep the ball in hand and sustain the move was too much when maybe a kick chase would have brought more territorial reward.
Back came Chinnor each time and eventually it told. Penalty on 22 for not releasing in the tackle. Three minutes to go and Strang ensured the winning points were safe for Chinnor: 15-17.
It was difficult to argue that the 14 men did not deserve this for their relentless second half pressure a man down. As for Barum this was a very welcome bonus point against a strong outfit and a powerful display of team rugby which bodes well for the rest of the season.