Avon’s Cup Hopes Thwarted
A disastrous first quarter saw Avon concede an unassailable lead to Corsham in this delayed quarter final clash in the Bath Combination Vase.
Having reshuffled their team with 5 first choice regulars missing, Avon hoped for a stable start but unfortunately suffered the opposite. An early Corsham penalty from Kalif Barnes opened the scoring, then a wayward relieving Avon kick was adroitly fielded by Corsham to create a simple overlap for a try in the corner by Kyran Broughton.
The home side, who staged the match at Melksham’s impressive facilities, then extended their lead still further with their second try from a well-rehearsed lineout drive for Wes Newson to touch down. 5 minutes later, another misjudged defensive kick allowed Corsham to launch a devastating counter-attack with great support play resulting in Barnes crossing for another try in the corner.
With the conversion added for a 20 point lead after only 20 minutes play, Avon were left staring down the barrel. With Josh Harding-Wyatt putting in a man-of-the-match performance as a makeshift prop and Josh Hiscoff
and Ian Burnell
making the hard yards up front, Avon gradually started to build some concerted pressure.
This created the position for Jonny Batchelor to slot a penalty, then some swift hands saw winger James Leeming
sprint over for a try, converted by Batchelor just before half time to reduce the deficit to 10 points.
This scoreline remained the same for the first 30 minutes of the second half as both teams’ defences cancelled each other out, hindered by the biting wind and the greasy ball which often led to turnovers and breakdowns. Although Tom Boreham
and Alex Gapper
threatened with some powerful runs, Avon found it difficult to maintain any real continuity and too often fell foul of some critical decisions.
Finally, as the end neared, Corsham put the result emphatically beyond doubt with their 4th try again scored by Newson to progress to the next round where they play Combe Down for a place in the final on the Rec.