The Nomads have been slow to start in recent matches and the emphasis was to turn that around this week and produce a fast start to the match. The team responded immediately from the kick off by pinning Sidmouth, who had only lost twice this season, back in their own half. Exmouth launched a number of attacks and took to the game to the opposition but were thwarted by Sidmouth excellent defence. The Cockles backs looked the more dangerous with Mike Woodcock constantly getting over the gain line and in turn Glenn Layton finding spaces to put the rest of the backs into. This pattern continued for the first twenty minutes of the half and each time Sid defence came out on top to frustrate the Nomads.
Sidmouth then managed to get a foothold in the game and Exmouth indiscipline without the ball cost the side a lot of territory and with Sidmouth lineout functioning well they produced a lot of quick ball to then drive Exmouth backwards. The Nomads conceded two tries from a driving maul and a five metre scrum neither of which were converted to go into the break ten nil down.
The second half followed a similar pattern to the first again with Exmouth starting the half on the front foot but either the last pass or a wrong decision made in attack led to the side still not being able to breach the opposition’s try line. Exmouth frustration with the way referee was interpreting the scrum led to a number of scuffles between the packs with Exmouth again seeming to lose out in this area conceding a number of penalties. At this point the referee suffered a hamstring injury meaning that there was a delay in proceedings whilst the referee from the first team game made his way over to officiate the last half hour of the match. This coincided with Exmouth gaining a foothold in the scrum throughout the rest of the match.
Sidmouth went on to dominate the final fifteen minutes of the match and scored two well worked tries one of which was converted to leave the final result standing at 22-0 to Sidmouth. Credit where credit is due Sidmouth are top of the league for a reason and surely won’t be stopped between now and the end of the season they are a very well drilled and organised side who took their chances well. Dare it be said that the Nomads may have to train in the future to add a little bit of structure to their game?
This week’s man of the match for the Nomads was Glenn Layton who was a constant thorn in the side of Sidmouth all afternoon whilst organising everyone around him throughout proceedings. The night shirt this week was awarded to the veteran warrior Leigh Ellis who saw out the last ten minutes of the game in the sin bin courtesy of giving his handbag a good working out on the opposition, whether any blows actually landed though is another story.