North Dorset 32 - 17 Wimborne
Wimborne out of Dorset & Wilts Cup despite brave second half fight back at North Dorset.
Wimborne travelled to Slaughtergate more in hope than anything else for the Dorset &Wilts Cup Semi Final having incurred yet more injuries in the previous week’s league match with Wootton Bassett and with the recent home defeat to North Dorset still fresh in the memory. A much changed team with a make shift second row of second team regulars prop George Draper and back row Luke Carey were eventually able to come away defeated but with many positives from in particular the second half performance.
But once again it was the inability to match the opposition in the first quarter of the match that was Wimborne’s down fall as within a quarter of an hour they found themselves trailing by seventeen points to nil following some poor tackling and a failure to counter the home side’s well organised forward drives. In effect the match was lost in this first quarter but to Wimborne's credit if replacement centre Joe Bartlett, a welcome returnee from marines training, had not spilled the ball when crossing the line with less than 15 minutes to play , they would have got back to within a score of North Dorset.
That said by the end of the first half after some telling breaks from in particular Ollie Hamer in the centre Wimborne’s confidence was visibly rising only to lose Ed Carter to the sin bin for reasons best known to the referee with a resultant lapse again in defence to allow the home side over for a further unconverted try. Eventually Wimborne reaped some reward when wing Jack Young used his strength to score wide out. James Williams landed a difficult conversion to conclude the first half with Wimborne trailing by 7 points to 22.
The second half was a completely different game all together with Wimborne taking the game to their hosts for sustained periods of the half. Hartnett (briefly), Mills, McKenzie and Bartlett were all unleashed from the bench to add fresh legs to the renewed impetus.
Declan Foley was beginning to punch holes and draw in defenders to create space for others to endeavour to exploit but it was not until an opportunistic interception by Dylan Case who thereafter outsprinted the defence from the half way line in the twenty second minute that any additional score was put on the board. In response North Dorset almost immediately probed back into Wimborne territory and grateful accepted an easy three points when Wimborne were caught off side within their own twenty metre line.
Nevertheless back came Wimborne, Hamer created some space in mid field and sent Joe Bartlett over. Suddenly at 17-25 Wimborne sniffed the semblance of an upset but when Bartlett was unable to ground the ball after another sustained attack the game was almost up.
North Dorset re grouped and drove back up field and the tiring Wimborne defence was breached one further time for a converted try which brought up the final score of 17 points to 32.
A valiant effort from Wimborne after the early self destruct first twenty minutes with lessons to be taken from the poor start.
Head Coach Barry Maidment commented “there was a lot to like and the second half performance certainly gives us something to work from moving forward and I would hope we will be in a position to select a more settled team for next week’s crucial league match at Bradford on Avon “
1 J.Arnold 2 S.Barker 3 W.Cooper 4 G Draper 5 L.Carey 6 A.Nadin7. E.Carter 8 D.Foley(capt)
9 A.Kerley10 J.Williams 11 J.Adams 12 D.Case 13 O.Hamer 14 J Young 15 T. Chaffey
Replacements P Mills, J Hartnett,, C MacKenzie , J Bartlett