Avon return to winning ways
A 33-7 bonus point win over Imperial consolidates 3rd place in Somerset Premier.
After an early spell of Avon pressure, it was Imperial who threatened to open the scoring but their try attempt was prevented as the ball was dislodged by a covering tackle as their number 8 drove over the line. Thereafter Avon came into their own with a great display of attacking rugby where the forwards and backs linked seamlessly to create a flow of fluid attacks.
This was orchestrated from Zak Harwood who produced a man-of-the-match performance in the unaccustomed position of fly half, constantly testing the Imperial defence with his powerful runs and keeping Avon on the front foot with his trusty left boot. This pressure was eventually rewarded after a multi-phase Avon attack saw Xander Davis pop the ball out of the tackle before skipper scott book timed an exquisite pass to Josh Harding-Wyatt who cantered over the opening try.
Shortly afterwards a solid Avon scrum allowed Harwood the chance to surge upfield before Chaz Meddick sucked in the visitors’ defence to unleash centre Glen Atherton who brushed off a despairing tackle to touch down with Jonny Batchelor slotting the conversion.
Imperial’s efforts saw them add a deserved converted try from an opportunist short penalty but Avon responded in style after another concerted movement was only halted by last ditch defence inside the visitors’ 22. From the resulting line out, predatory Ben Hurd fastened onto the ball after an unstoppable forward drive to touch down their 3rd try.
With the match being played in great spirit between the two teams and well-refereed, the second half gave the crowd an entertaining afternoon of live rugby as play ebbed and flowed across the pitch. Avon always had the edge though and it was no surprise when they soon added their bonus point try. Another attacking scrum saw Avon move play out wide with Harwood tracking inside all the way before being unleashed to cruise over the try line.
After both sides cancelled each other out for a spell, Avon finally added their 5th try, started and finished by scott book. A soaring line out catch presented quick ball off the top which was swiftly moved along the line to the right wing before play was switched back across field for Book to add the finishing touch near the posts. Batchelor added his 4th conversion to seal the convincing win.
Director of Rugby Clive Book said afterwards “I’m pleased that we performed well against a useful side which gives us a platform to build on for next Saturday away trip to Minehead”