Kingsbridge Colts travelled to Cheltenham on sunday to play round 3c of the National Plate against Old Patesians. Old Pats seniors are in National league 3 SW and the impression given from members of the crowd was Old Pats just had to show up… Kickoff didn’t go to plan as Kings failed to go 10m. From the resulting scrum the Pats 8 who had a strong game broke and made it into Kings 22. A good scrum from Kings was let down by a poor pass from the 9 to 10 put Kings under pressure and a penalty was conceded in front of the posts Old Pats took the lead 3-0. A good restart saw Kings regather and get a penalty just outside the Pats 22. A lineout on the 5m was spoiled by Pats, they cleared there lines only for Stacey to take a quick throw and unleash Canevali, Pats struggled all afternoon to cope with Canevali. Kings strung multiple phases together going from one side of the pitch to another with great urgency at the breakdown only for a knock on to end a good spell. Another clearance from Pats led to yet another quick throw and counter attack from Kings, going through the hands Dickens fed the ball perfectly to Morgan blocking off the Pats back from being able to get a direct line to Morgan and he went over in the corner to make it 3-5, Beattie converted from wide out 3-7.
Pats now went through phases themselves and there catch and drive from the lineout was well executed and proving very hard to stop. Kings were now on a warning from the referee for repeated infringements, with the referee and touch judges all being Gloucester Society referees and also linked by headsets it was an experience for the lads and one they learned from quickly as the discipline improved rapidly. A lineout won by Kings led to a kick chase and a strong tackle from Adams at 12 who was to keep hitting Pats runners hard all afternoon along with Haddy in the backrow. Another Canevali counter and offload to Beattie ended with Beattie tackled just short of the line and a penalty to Pats for not releasing. Kings then got a tighthead resulting in M Jones having a strong run attracting several Pats defenders as they attempted to drag him down. Kings as they have of late then started to force some passes when not on and put themselves under pressure. For several minutes Kings went through several mistakes with the lineout under pressure and a penalty kick in a good position kicked dead. Then Kings turned Pats over with some great counter rucking only to give another penalty away and Pats to make the score 6-7.
The second half started with Hollingworth catching and feeding Jones who set off again on another strong run, from the ruck the backline spread the ball wide only for the final pass to go behind the recipient. A strong Kings scrum caused the Pats 9 to knock on and the following scrum involved Jones and Haddy making big yardage down the blindside. Kings took a good lineout only to knock on as the maul started getting some momentum! Adams was pinged for a high tackle, this was followed by a crunching tackle from Fox. Pats were now getting some go forward and multiple phases. They got into the Kings 22 but were turned over, most people would expect the ball to be cleared but the Kings backs with some confidence that’s growing by the week shifted it across the paddock like a Super XV and broke clear only for a forward pass to end the move as a 2 on 1 was only left to beat. Pats then got given a yellow card for repeated infringing. From the lineout throw from Mathews a great take from Fox led to phases from Kings. Pats were caught offside and a quick tap led to Jones crashing over with half of Pats hanging on to him. Converted by Beattie this made the score 6-14. Immediately from the restart poor decision making from Kings led to Pats getting a lineout deep in Kings 22, with a catch and drive they went over to score but missed the conversion 11-14. Pats then went through a spell of poor discipline with Kings missing a penalty. Shortly after Adams launched a booming penalty to touch and give Kings some breathing space.
Pats came back again with waves of attack and the Kings defence holding firm. Pound came on for Mathews with 7 minutes to go, Kings conceded a penalty and Pats kicked it deep into Kings 22, from the resulting lineout they drove it and made rapid gains as they went over the tryline, unfortunately for them the 8 lost control of the ball. Kings with a scrum on the 5m in the corner needed to clear their lines but the resulting pass meant Adams had to step the chasing Pats flanker and feed Canevali behind the tryline who broke out and set up a ruck on the 22. Kings then worked through several phases and eventually Pats forced Kings into touch only for the referee to blow for full time.
Great game from both teams marred only by the Pats tighthead having to go to hospital with a suspected neck injury, he was given the all clear at the hospital fortunately and Kingsbridge wish him a speedy recovery. Kings face Topsham away on Saturday in the Devon Colts league and await the draw to find out who they have in the last 16 in the National Plate. MOTM was Marvin Jones.