Well don’t bank on me for any racing predictions, I said we had a chance of a losing bonus point against Redruth, how wrong can I be a very late try after dominating most of the game gave The Chiefs a hugely deserved win and maximum points with 4 tries scored. They played some great rugby with plenty of passion, control and power. Jake Murphy controlled the game with relish and even the loss of Jordan Petherbridge couldn’t derail The Chiefs.
The signs looked good from the start as the Pottington Road faithful gave The Chiefs the biggest roar I have ever heard as they came on to the pitch, it seemed to even rattle several Redruth players. The Chiefs got down to business straight away and with a number of phases under their belt, showing a level of control we are not always used to seeing, earned their first of a succession of penalties in the first half which Jordan Petherbridge duly slotted over for 3 points. Minutes later JP had to leave the field through injury and James Bath came on as replacement.
Then there was a sustained period of pressure exerted on to Redruth and orchestrated by the brilliant Jake Murphy who controlled the game from fly half. Varying his attack with long passes, short pop ups for forwards to run onto or breaks through the gaps he kept Redruth guessing throughout the match. Phase after phase finally saw Gaz Evans score his first try for Barnstaple. Jake Murphy slotted the conversion taking over kicking duties
A break from our 22 and some great passing saw Will Topps break down the wing only to be stopped by the only means that Redruth had,a high tackle, resulting in the first of Redruth’s 3 Yellow cards. Another break 10 minutes later saw a Will Topps pass, which would have left Jack Bond clear, deliberately knocked on and their second yellow card ensued. With such sustained pressure from Barnstaple it was only a matter of time before the next try and Kyle Speare breaking a tackle superbly to run in his first try for The Chiefs. With only 2 minutes to half time and 17-0 up it was looking good. Then Redruth in the dying minutes of the half had their first bout of sustained pressure resulting in several penalties by Barnstaple before Redruth managed to push over for their first try, half time and it was 17-7.
Second half and Redruth came out with a new determination, with the wind at their backs they waisted no time scoring a penalty and a converted try within 10 minutes. Barnstaple regained their composure and began dominating possession but in the 71st minute Redruth took the lead 24-17. It looked like my prediction was going to come true but Barnstaple then played some of their best rugby. and a succession of penalties and lineout drives by The Chiefs finally resulted in Redruth’s 3rd Yellow and in the 79th minutes Winston James went over to bring us within 2 points.
The final minute and a superb kickoff gave Winston the chance to challenge for the ball The Chiefs managed to turn it over and slipping a tackle, Jake Murphy who controlled the game superbly throughout popped a pass to Winston James 10 yards out score a dramatic winning try in the last seconds.
This was indeed a massive result and showed how far Barnstaple Chiefs have come in just one season. They played phase after phase retaining possession, with the forwards hitting the line and making yards every time. Oli, the Stag, Mason couldn’t stop running, Ashlee and James never missed a heart beat as they shared the hookers roll. Gaz Evans, the first time the Barnstaple Faithful have seen him was immense as was the whole of the pack. The backs couldn’t stop running hitting the line with pace and pulling Redruth all over the place, Ryan Carter was magnificent. This is the best I have seen The Chiefs play especially in such windy conditions and I reckon there is still more in the tank and I am looking forward to the rest of the season with hunger.
For Bob and Del’s top 20 photos and a match report click HERE
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