Devonport Avoid Being Struck by Lightning

07 February 2023

19:00 @ Devonport Services RFC

HMNB Devonport


Lightning Force

HMNB Devonport V Lightning Force 01 Feb 23 KO 1800.

Being the first time these teams have met, Devonport had a good turn out of 27 keen and eager players. However, there were many new faces within the team and their warm up was invested in establishing drills ready for the fixture. The coaches had their work cut out to get the team prepared in short order. Lightening Force (LF) who had minimal numbers for the match appeared well drilled and prepared. Pitch and weather conditions were perfect for any game plan set and there was an unknown anticipation on how this fixture would play out.

Devonport kicked off but LF led with some strong carries fwhich saw them gain many yards over the gain line. As the defensive efforts picked up, an early injury to Devonport’s Hooker caused an early stoppage. Hard carries in attack and defensive hits from both sides showed that each team was up for it. Points conceded by Devonport in the first 20 minutes was the result of LF winning the territorial battle. The remainder of the first half saw Devonport get their bearings, gain continuity, an improvement in handling and a strong scrum led to tries. However, Lighting force sent a reminder towards the end of the first half that they were still in the fight with a well worked try.

HT Home side lead 17-13

Devonport’s replacements at half time would need to settle in quickly to maintain the hits and continuity achieved in the first half. The challenge was laid down for Devonport not to concede any points in the second half and the lack of replacements for LF would make an interesting final 20 mins.The same level of intensity remained from the first half. LF were keen to get the go forward with Devonport providing solid defence within their 22, which was rewarded with a valuable turnover. Set piece remained a strength for Devonport and a number of turnovers won at the breakdown led to the home side winning the territorial battle. As fatigue settled in for LF, Devonport targeted the gaps and scored a number of tries in the final 20. Strong set piece and carries from the forwards provided the platform for balanced and pacy running from the backs which led to the 36-13 win. The defensive challenge posed by the coacheswas met without conceding.

Credit to both teams for an entertaining fixture with a low penalty count, solid tackles and strong carries from either side revealed the standard played may not have been what was expected.

Devonport Try Scorers:

PO ET(ME) Fowler, ET (ME) Kieran Baldry, ET (ME) Cameron Dale, ET (MESM) Josh Powell, ET (MESM) Joe Hope, ET (CIS) Matt Cole

Words by Speedy Carr