Somerset U20 vs Devon (March 26) now to be played at Newton Abbot RFC, ko: 3.15pm
Somerset 1st XV Fixtures & Training
Senior Coaching Team Contact
Somerset 14 - 7 North Midlands
Saturday, May 21, 2016 at Taunton RFC
SOMERSET made it two wins out of three this season in the County Championship, Division Two South leaving visitors North Midlands to pick-up the dreaded 'Wooden Spoon' having lost all their three games.
"I'm very pleased with the win especially after the disappointing performance in the first game against Devon when we weren't able to field our strongest possible team due to other commitments," said Somerset head coach Mark Hawkes.
London based Argentinean referee Luis Caviglia wasted little time stamping his authority on the game sending Somerset prop Mike Flook to the sin-bin after just five minutes followed five minutes later by his opposite number Steff Thorp.
The visitors should have taken an early lead but full back Oli Rayner's penalty attempt was wide. The stalemate was broken midway through the first half when Brad Barnes landed a 40 metre penalty and the fly-half added a second three minutes before the break.
Barnes increased Somerset's lead early in the second half with his third penalty before replacement prop Alex Giltrow powered over the line from close range for the opening try but Barnes failed to convert from outwide.
Somerset continued to press and dominate the scrum replacement Joe White being the second North Midlands player to be yellow carded quickly followed by Sam Knott reducing the visitors to 13 men.
The visitors kept battling away and with Knott back on the pitch they finally found a gap in the Somerset defence with replacement scrum half Jacob Nash crossing the whitewash and fly-half Rob Petty adding the extras.
In the final minutes of the game Giltrow was the fourth player to spend time in sin bin in what was a scrappy game played in a constant drizzle.
Somerset: A Francis (Hornets); C Carter (Hornets), D Ashfield (Clevedon), K Middlemiss (Weston-super-Mare), O James (Clevedon); B Barnes (Clifton), M Spencer (Clifton); M Flook (Hartpury), K Ward (Hornets), T Harrison (unattached), E Hack (Dings Crusaders), B Harvey (capt, Taunton), W Vakalutukali (Taunton RFC & Royal Navy), M Canulli (Dings Crusaders), J Childs (unattached).
Reps: J Williams (Clifton), A Giltrow (Clifton), C Harris (Hornets), C Francis (Hornets), H Tuttiet (Weston-super-Mare), K Hill (Clevedon), A Rice (Clevedon),
Somerset scorers -
try: A Giltrow (55); pens: B Barnes (20, 37, 49)
Yellow cards: M Flook (5-15), A Giltrow (80)
North Midlands: O Rayner (Old Halesonians); T Hunt (Bromsgrove), F Kelly (Luctonians), S Leach (Old Halesonians), J Trinham (Stourbridge); R Petty (Stourbridge), S Boxall (Luctonians); B Green (Bromsgrove, capt), W Crane (Moseley Oak), S Thorp (Stourbridge), N Murphy (Stourbridge), C Goddard (Birmingham & Solihull), J Kelly (Luctonians), A Cheshire (Luctonians), C Nicholls (Stourbridge).
Reps: J White (Luctonians), G Belmonte (Bromsgrove), S Knott (Worcester University and Luctonians), E Parry (Dudley Kingswinford), J Nash (South Leicester), A Elvers (Stourbridge), Joe Bridger (Stourbridge).
North Midlands scorers -
try: J Nash (72); con: R Petty (72)
Yellow card: S Thorp (11-21), J White (62-70), S Knott (64-75)
Referee: Luis Caviglia (RFU)
Somerset 26 - 22 Kent
Saturday, May 14, 2016 at Taunton RFC
SOME tough talking at half time, when Somerset were trailed 8-6, rejuvenated the home side with Royal Marine Watisoni Vakalutukali creating their first try just after the break and then scoring the second himself.
"We decided at half time to get stuck into the game and not let it slip away," said 'Toots' Vakalutukali. "Its always a privilege to play for Somerset at the end of long hard season for Taunton and glad that we got the victory."
Brad Barnes' penalty gave Somerset the early lead which was cancelled out by his opposite number James Cameron. But it wasn't until the half hour when forwards power saw Kent No.8 Tom Stradwick cross the whitewash.
Barnes added penalties either side on the half time break and the conversion of Somerset's opening try as Vakalutukali broke from inside his own half and timed perfectly his offload for fellow flanker Michele Canulli to score under the posts.
This sparked life back into the Kent side with tries from Stradwick and scrum half Charlie Edwards, both converted by Cameron, either side of Barnes landing his fourth penalty before Vakalutukali's try which Barnes converted.
Somerset: Adam Francis (Hornets); Charlie Carter (Hornets), Sam Harrison (Clifton), Dean Ashfield (Clevedon), Oscar James (Clevedon); Bradley Barnes (Clifton), Mitchell Spencer (Clifton); Mike Flook (Hartpury), Jack Williams (Clifton), Tom Harrison (unattached), Ed Hack (Dings Crusaders), Brett Harvey (capt, Taunton), Watisoni Vakalutukali (Taunton RFC & Royal Navy), Michele Canulli (Dings Crusaders), Jake Childs (unattached).
Reps: Kieran Ward (Hornets), Liam Appleton (Cleve), Courtney Harris (Hornets), Nick Spellisey (Bridgwater & Albion), Hayden Tuttiet (Weston-super-Mare), James McLachlan (Bridgwater & Albion), Kieran Hill (Clevedon)
Somerset scorers -
tries Canulli (45), Vakalutukali (65); cons: Barnes (45, 65); pens: Barnes (7, 39, 42, 59)
Kent: Frankie Neale (Westcombe Park); Temi Okenla (Gravesend), Rob White (Old Elthamians), Josh McMahon (Tonbridge Juddians, Dan Hamilton (Blackheath); James Cameron (Westcombe Park), Charlie Edwards (Old Elthamians); Nick Porter (Westcombe Park), Joe Bonner (capt, Westcombe Park), Terry Read (Blackheath), Luke Bellinger (Westcombe Park), Royce Cadman (Canterbury), Lee Covington (Westcombe Park), Hugh McCormick (Colfeians), Tom Stradwick (Blackheath).
Reps: Ted Lang (Blackheath), Jimmy Green (Canterbury), Issac Ajayi (Blackheath), J Ames Munton (Sidcup), David Bonner (Westcombe Park), Ben Hough (Old Elthamians).
Kent scorers -
tries: Tom Stradwick (30, 55), Charlie Edwards (61); cons: Cameron (55, 61); pen: Cameron (10)
Referee: Don Conway (RFU)
Devon 39 - 10 Somerset
Saturday, May 7, 2016 at Teignmouth RFC
DEVON are biding to return to the top tier of county rugby for the first time since 2010 and they showed their intent by running in six tries in the comprehensive victory, their first for six years, in their only home match in this campaign.
"The boys were outstanding especially considering that we have had just three training sessions," said coach Paul Setter. "The forwards provided the platform for the backs because we wanted to play the game at speed."
The South Devon sunshine and the rock hard dusty pitch at Teignmouth plus some crunching tackled took its toll on the players. Somerset No.8 Jake Holcombe left the field after 15 minutes with a suspected broken ankle.
Devon had to play out the final minutes of the game down to 12 players when first captain Adam Thomas was yellow carded for a no arms tackle. He was followed to the sin-bin by scrum half Jordan Petherbridge and hooker Dean Avery.
Somerset, when their hosts were down to 14 men, scored a consolation try through prop Tom Harrison which fly-half Stuart Heal converted to add to his first half penalty. But Devon had established a 20-3 lead by half time.
Centre Steve Parry crossed for the first Devon try followed by wing Will Topps and full back Dan Powell. Flanker Dan Williams powered over for two tries after the break with Lewis Paterson the last.
Petherbridge had an off day with his kicking from the tee adding just one conversion first half and a penalty in the first half and the extras to Williams two touchdowns.
Devon: Dan Powell (Exmouth); Will Topps (Barnstaple), Lewis Paterson (Ivybridge), Mark Wathes (Exmouth), Ollie Rice (Exmouth); Steve Perry (Barnstaple), Jordan Petherbridge (Barnstaple); Isaac Dalton (Exmouth), Dean Avery (Newton Abbot), Matt Dowrick (Newton Abbot), Adam Thomas (Brixham, capt), Jack Fahy (Exmouth), Dan Williams (Torquay), Wayne Sprangle (Tiverton), Sam Thomas (Brixham).
Reps: Chey Bryce (Brixham), Nigel Berry (Exmouth), Dom Loomes (Ivybridge), Alex Smith (Newton Abbot), James Harris (Exmouth), Dean Squire (Brixham), George Meadows (Exmouth).
Devon scorers -
tries: S Perry (4), W Topps (16), D Powell (38), D Williams (42, 56), L Paterson (64); cons: J Petherbridge (4, 42, 56); pen: J Petherbridge (40)
Somerset: Craig Nicholls (Hornets); Charlie Carter (Hornets), Rob Thompson (Taunton Titans), Aaron Rice (Clevedon), Oscar James (Clevedon); Stuart Heal (Taunton), Josh Mortimore (Clevedon); Brian Largenton (Clevedon), Chris Francis (Hornets), Tom Harrison (unattached), Ed Hack (Dings Crusaders), Courtney Harris (Hornets), Jake Childs (unattached), Luca Ercolani (Bridgwater & Albion), Jake Holcombe (Dings Crusaders).
Reps: Jon Gatford (Taunton), Matty Hudd (Dings Crusaders), Dan Ogden (Hornets), Brett Harvey (Taunton), Nick Spellisey (Bridgwater & Albion), Kieran Hill (Clevedon), James Bath (Barnstaple).
Somerset scorers -
try: T Harrison (78); con: S Heal (78); pen: S Heal (14)
Referee: A Heal (RFU)
North Midlands 48 - 19 Somerset
Saturday, May 23, 2015
Surrey 59 - 33 Somerset
Saturday, May 16, 2015
Somerset 34 - 31 Devon
Saturday, May 9, 2015
Kent RFU 1st XV, 28 - 9 Somerset RFU 1st XV - 25th May 2014
As we went through all the seasons in one afternoon at Medway RFC Kent came out deserved winners in the end although the score may have flattered them a little. Somerset handed debuts to 20 year old Nick Mason of Taunton RFC at full back and Callum Lynch 18 year old hooker, Carl Brown of North Petherton RFC and 22 year old Tom Crossman of Nailsea & Backwell RFC. Marcus Adams of Keynsham RFC another 18 year old also travelled as a reserve. These guys have all progressed through the county under 20’s and Development XV this season.
A first half that saw Somerset come out all guns blazing and put a huge amount of pressure on the Kent side but they could not finish off the chances they had created sadly. The score was 11-9 at half time to the home team and coming out of the changing rooms there really was all to play for. However Kent scored twice in ten minutes and put the game out of reach really as Somerset struggled to break down a very well organised defence. The Somerset forwards were outstanding at scrum time and really caused the home forwards problems in that area, the county really are spoiled for front row forwards. It wasn’t enough though and the home sides continuity play was better. A couple of yellow cards for Somerset didn’t help but did cause them to play with more width and be more adventurous. That in its self caused a few problems for the home side. Dave Wheeler of Dings Crusaders scored a perfectly good try that wasn’t seen by the ref after some bad positioning on his part. That said it would not of changed the result only the score. Overall a good campaign for the county as yet again new talents have been identified and given opportunities to show them. As for the players they would of loved to have been going to Twickenham next weekend. It wasn’t to be this time and the county coaching staff felt that Kent’s well organised defence and availability of inside runners both in attack and defence was the best they had seen in the two years since they played Kent the last time. Good luck to Kent who play at 10am at Twickenham next weekend against Durham.
Somerset RFU v Kent RFU 24/5/14
1. J.Woolmore, Taunton RFC
13. A.Taylor Unattached
2. D.Wheeler Dings Crusaders RFC
14. M.Watkins WSM RFC
3. E.Booley Cinderford RFC
15. N.Mason Taunton RFC
4. E.Hack Capt Dings Crusaders RFC
16. C.Lynch Walcot RFC
5. B.Harvey Taunton RFC
17. M.Hudd Dings Crusaders RFC
6. D.Fry Old Redcliffians RFC
18. O.Streeter Burnham On Sea RFC
7. R.Vakalutukali Royal Navy & Taunton RFC
19. C.Brown North Petherton RFC
8. A.Gibbs North Petherton RFC
20. T.Crossman Nailsea & Backwell RFC
9. M.Spencer Hartpury RFC
21. R.Hickery Bristol Harlequins RFC
10. J.Hall Cleve RFC
22. M.Flook Dings Crusaders RFC
11. S.Harrison Clifton RFC
Travelling Reserve -
12. R.Dempsey Dings Crusaders RFC
23. M.Adams Keynsham RFC
Somerset RFU 1st XV 20 - 15 Devon RFU 1st XV- 10/5/2014 - Bridgwater and Albion
The county coaching team were really pleased with the start to this game, going 12 nil up in as many minutes into the wind. As the game progressed it looked as though the home team would, if they could keep the ball, go on to a comfortable victory. The scrum went well, the front row of Woolmore, Wheeler and Booley looked a real handful and the outstanding back row of Gibbs, Fry and Spellisy featured in most things. Fry's dynamism and Gibbs power were key in most things the county did in defence and going forward as half time came.
Somerset came out after the break and Cook kicked a very difficult penalty, striking the ball superbly to take the game to 15-0. Cook had a good afternoon and showed some real class on occasions in what he did. However it was then Devon who capitalised on Somerset's mistakes and a loss of patience from the home team, along with a loss of understanding on keeping things simple, boosted Devon; who strung together some good passages of play, often from turnovers, a good offloading game on occasions paid dividends.
The line breaks in the first half for Somerset numbered 8, but in the second half it was only 1 and they seemed not to know how to play with the very strong wind in their favour. However, Head Coach Hawkes said "we were concerned in the first half at the number of times we were giving away ball that we had worked hard for, either in silly offloads or from poor presentation, we created a number of try scoring opportunities and we didn't finish them, the players were asked how they would solve those problems in the second half they came up with some good ideas, they really came through in the second half all credit to them".
There were tries from debutante Alex Mitchard of Midsomer Norton RFC who used a great line to score under the post from the 22, and 2 from the master finisher, wing Ali Taylor of Wellington RFC. Both tries different but very special, Mitchard was playing his first county game and demonstrates just what quality there is out here in the lower level leagues, which also goes for Aaron Cook from Wells RFC.
[click image for full sized version]
It all reflects well on Somerset RFU who have adopted an open policy to training and their skills development days to get players to come and play for the county who really want to. Also being very pro active in going and watching lots of games through the season identifying both players to play first team rugby or develop them through their development XV who play three fixtures through the season. Hawkes said "we have received varying feedback from people who are not involved in the coaching set up, however, those that want to be here are and they are filling the county hoops with pride" . . . "I have a strong belief that county rugby is about the place we come from and those that empower themselves to get involved are proud of it". Somerset play against Bath United about a month before the County fixtures start. Hawkes identifies this as a wonderful arena to see who genuinely wants to play for the county. Today we had 7 players on debut - that can only be a good thing for our county rugby.
Some Somerset players now look forward to having two weeks off and allowing some very tired players to recover some fitness before they travel to Medway RFC in Kent on the 24th May, however a development team travel to Newton Abbott RFC to play a Devon Combination side from Torbay and hopefully more talent will break through and put themselves in contention for a place on the bus to Kent.
Try: Ali Taylor (2), Alex Mitchard
Con: Aaron Cook
Pen: Aaron Cook
Dan Lee, Chey Bryce, George Savage
Joe Hall (Cleve), Ali Taylor (Wellington), Rob Dempsey (Dings), Alex Mitchard (Mid Norton), James Oakley (Dings), Aaron Cook (Wells), Mitch Spencer (Hartpury Coll), Jake Woolmore (Taunton T), Dave Wheeler (Dings), Elliott Booley (Cinderford), Ed Hack (Capt) (Dings), Brett Harvey (Taunton T), Nick Spellissy (Bridgwater & A), Dan Fry (Old Reds), Aaron Gibbs (North Petherton)
Replacements: Sam Williams (North Petherton), Matt Hudd (Dings), Nigel Berry (Exmouth), 'Toots' Vakalutukali (Taunton T), Jake Knight (Wells), James Mackay (Weston SM), Matt Watkins (West SM)
Will Topps (Barnstaple), Alex Browne (Exmouth), Tom Goodman (Brixham), Kyle Browne (Newton A), Ben Rudkin (Unatt), George Meadows (Exmouth), Olly Massey-Birch (UWIC), Matt Dowrick (Newton A), Chey Bryce (Brixham), Declan Sexton (Devonport Serv), Chris Bentley (Capt) (Exmouth), Matt Ghol (Barnstaple), Sam Thomas (Brixham), Wayne Sprangle (Tiverton), Dan Lee (Taunton)
Replacements : Dan Reed (Tiverton), Mark Manton (Taunton T), George Savage (Exmouth), Grady Wright (Barnstaple), Blake Lugg (Tiverton), Alex Pike (Tiverton), Ollie Mulberry (Saltash)
Referee : Luis Cavaglia (RFU/London Society)
Bath United 34 Somerset RFU XV 7 - 14/4/2014 - The Recreation Ground, Bath.
A big group of players in every way pulled on their county shirt and had a great evening at Bath. 42 players managed to get on the pitch against the Guinness A league champions Bath United captained by former County player Kane Palma-Newport. Players from levels 4 down to 9 were given the honour to challenge themselves and it looked as though they loved it. Rugby really was "for all" and all wanted to be there.
A big thank you to Bath Rugby for supporting your county's rugby and all involved that gave up their time.
Somerset now look forward to their representative season with fixtures against Torbay Combination "Sharks" 17/5 at Newton Abbot RFC, Devon RFU 10/5 at Bridgwater & Albion and Kent RFU on the 24/5 at Medway RFC in Kent.
The following players filled the county shirt with pride last night at the Rec v Bath United. In what was a special evening.
|Ed Hack - Dings Crusaders (Captain)||Ross Hickery - Bristol Harlequins RFC|
|Rhys Luckwell - Dings Crusaders||Jason Court - Bristol Harlequins RFC|
|James Oakley - Dings Crusaders||Elliot Bowler - Cleve RFC|
|Jack Hughes - Dings Crusaders||Joe Hall - Cleve RFC|
|Sam Steer - Dings Crusaders||Sam Lewis - Hornets Colts|
|Brett Harvey - Taunton Titans (Captain)||Harry Lewis - Bath Youth|
|Jake Woolmore - Taunton Titans||Callum Lynch - Walcott RFC|
|Carl Brown - North Petherton RFC||James Hurrel-Smith - Keynsham RFC|
|Aaron Gibbs _ North Petherton RFC||Alex Mitchard - Midsomer Norton RFC|
|Pete Dickens - North Petherton RFC||Tom Clark - Midsomer Norton RFC|
|Ben Chase - Chew Valley RFC||Sam Prentice - Midsomer Norton RFC|
|Trystan Davies - Chew Valley RFC||Ciaran Moore - Stourbridge RFC|
|Tom Crossman - Nailsea & Backwell RFC||Aaron Cook - Wells RFC|
|Ross Harrison - Taunton United RFC||Tim Piper - Burnham on Sea RFC|
|Dan Pearce - Bristol Harlequins RFC||Ollie Streeter - Burnham on Sea RFC|
|Mike Hocking - Burham on Sea RFC||James Andrews - Chard RFC|
|Sam Coles - Burnham on Sea RFC||Luke Hill - Sherborne RFC|
|Craig Britton - Avonmouth RFC||James Gregory - St Bernadettes RFC|
|Rich Stephens - Old Redcliffians RFC||Paul Ford - Kingswood RFC|
|Nigel Berry - Exmouth RFC||Matt Hudd - Water Boy - Dings Crusaders|
|Paddy Dean - Wellington RFC||Sam Williams - Water Boy - North Petherton RFC|
|Alistair Taylor - Wellington RFC||Marcus Adams - Water Boy - Keynsham RFC|
|Kieran Bromsgrove - Barton Hill RFC|
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