Kingsbridge Under 14s Devon Plate Final – Sunday 6th May 2012
Sidmouth 24 – 12 Kingsbridge
King’s Under 14s rounded off their most successful season to date by making the Plate Final for the second year running. Kings had demolished Plymouth Argaum 63-14, and then come out on top against tough opposition from Exeter Saracens 27-7 and Tavistock 17-10 in the run up to Sunday’s match at Sandy Park, home of Exeter Chiefs.
Kings started well, making the most of Sidmouth’s nervous handling with an early penalty shot at goal that narrowly missed giving them the lead. Sidmouth’s physically larger back line linked well to pressure both the centre and out wide but impressive defence and crunching tackles from Perez-Garcia, J Foale and Wotton kept the ball out. The pack was immense throughout the game only losing two scrums, under Banfield’s stewardship.
Intelligent kicking by G. Jones and Beattie forced Sidmouth to defend their line and resulted in a well organised forward’s assault that saw Oram storm through. Jones converted. Sidmouth responded by capitalising on a King’s mistake at the halfway mark to break down the wing and find enough inches by the corner flag to touch down. Ten minutes later in the last phase of play Sidmouth pulled back the lead with a late try in the corner to make it 10-7, despite the strong tackles from Sutton on his wing.
The second half started well with Kings constantly attacking and playing in the Sidmouth 22 for the first ten minutes – a try narrowly denied on two occasions. Sidmouth then ran in two tries in quick succession, the first through a clearance kick from their line being accidentally knocked backwards, the second from an extremely well-timed interception. Kings regrouped, and with the fresh legs and physicality of Mearns attacked relentlessly for the remaining 10 minutes. Mearns linked well with Baker and Wotton to cause havoc for the Sidmouth defence but Kings could not find a way through.
Kings battled hard, held their nerve and defended confidently. Eventually the ball found Rayworth who ran the entire length of the pitch to score from his own five metre line. The remaining minutes saw Kings continue to attack a tiring Sidmouth side, but the clock ran out and the ball found touch.
Many thanks from the boys to their families, friends and members of the club who turned out to support them on the day.