Wadebridge Camels hit back to secure bonus win
Wadebridge Camels 33, Clevedon 15
WADEBRIDGE Camels made it six wins in seven games to cling on to second place in the South West One West table.
They had to fight back from a 15-12 half-time deficit to do so, but it was a performance that pleased coach David Elston.
He said: "It was a good win against one of the better teams in the league, and a side who inflicted a huge defeat on us last season.
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"It was also good to secure another bonus point for scoring four or more tries in a match, while Gavin West appeared off the bench for his first team debut this season.
"We produced some excellent second-half defence and made good use of the elements after the interval. We now visit Oldfield Old Boys on Saturday, a team which did the double over us last year, but we will travel in good spirits."
Camels started well, and after a few flowing moves, the ball was recycled for hooker Matt Ballard to open the scoring with a try in the left-hand corner, but centre Dan Prout missed the conversion from out wide.
A few minutes later, Clevedon fly half Tom Thie was yellow-carded for illegally preventing a try-scoring opportunity, but Camels failed to take advantage of their extra man, forcing passes and giving up a couple of interceptions.
The Camels' lack of composure led to an excellent try by Clevedon's Harvey Russell, who crossed in the corner.
Camels regained the lead when winger Dom Hawkey showed great pace and evasive skills to scorch in for a try which James Grubb converted, having only been on the field for a few minutes as a replacement after an injury to the influential James Hawken.
But Clevedon, restored to full complement, managed two excellent tries before the break through wingers Oscar James and Mike Winter to give them a 15-12 interval lead.
The Camels had the wind at their backs in the second half and managed to address their defensive issues and started to pile on pressure in the Clevedon half.
Controlled play led to a try by lock Jack Scott, while young centre Will Pengelly showed his great pace to help himself to two more touchdowns, and all three tries were converted by Grubb.
Clevedon went in search of a bonus point for four tries, but Camels scrambled their defence well.
Coming under increasing pressure, Wadebridge had two players – Mark Grubb and Ballard – sin-binned in the last five minutes, but Clevedon failed to take advantage, surprisingly spurning the opportunity of a five-metre scrum, with a two-man pack advantage, to take a quick tap and go which Camels turned over.
Wadebridge: Lees, Johns, Pengelly, Hawken, D Hawkey, Prout, Collings, Treleaven, Ballard, Bilkey, Lumb, J Scott, B Scott, Stone (capt), M Grubb. Replacements: Rowe, James Grubb, West.
Wadebridge: Tries: Ballard, D Hawkey, J Scott, Pengelly (2); Cons: J Grubb (4).
Clevedon: Tries: Russell, James, Winter.