Chipping Sodbury 43 Wells 15

Chipping Sodbury ended their poor run as Gavin Edgar’s fourth hat-trick of the season helped them beat Wells on Saturday.

Sodbury were without head coach Harvey Skelton, who has gone to Bali so Matt Dew was front and centre to guide them.

The first try, on three minutes, went to Edgar.

The ball went left to Dan Cole, who made his first line break of the game. Once the ball was with Edgar, he powered the last 15m to score in the corner.

There was then a lengthy injury break as the referee was probed by the Sodbury physio, before the restorative powers of the cold sponge got things going again.

From the scrummage restart, Sodbury forced Wells back through three phases until the visitors punted long.

Tom Head was back on his 22 sweeping. He got a call from full-back Matt Tait and gave him the ball. Tait launched his own 50m kick down the tramlines and gave chase. Tait chipped ahead, and spotted the cover – a card-carrying member of the front row union and Tait dotted down a wonderful solo try in the corner.

Dan Bradley set off and took the ball to the Wells’ defensive line before feeding Cole, who burst clear.

With Jon Cook in support, he advanced further before finding Edgar, who bullied his way in from 30 metres for his second try.

Wells were forced to scramble in defence to hold the hosts at bay. When Sodbury stole a lineout on halfway the crowd held its breath. The Sods hammered through three phases before the ball got to Cook who broke free to race in from 30 metres.

As the first half drew to a close, Wells pressed hard into Sodbury’s 22.

They broke free from a lineout but were stopped in their tracks by the menacing figure of Keeping. Birthday boy Lee Ralph was straight over the ball to win a turnover and a penalty. The Sods cleared to halfway and there was time for the lineout.

Pete Butcher, was thrust skyward to secure the ball. Swift passing on the gain-line created a small gap for pacey full-back Tait to exploit. He hit the line hard and scorched in from 20 metres for his brace. With the conversion, Sodbury led 33 – 0 at half time.

Wells kicked off the second half and were immediately under the cosh. Butcher, Avent, and Guest held nothing back, gaining vital ground as they smashed into the defence.

Hollywell had navigated his way into the line. He straightened the move up and unleashed a dummy, a prop’s sidestep looked to be on but he released a pass of exquisite beauty. Tait, Cook, and Head took over.

They raced down the wing before giving the ball to Edgar, who burst free and added another try. Soon after, Wells exploited a lapse in concentration and scored their first try from a scrum within Sodbury’s 22.

Wells had a second try when they tapped a penalty to catch Sodbury napping. However, the hosts had their own back when Head tapped a penalty on Sodbury’s 10m line. Bradley took the ball and drifted left before delivering an enchanting flat pass that Edgar hit at speed.

He bounced one man away as he crossed into the Wells half, he veered right, evading two more men who rushed across to stop him. Edgar’s fourth try was a formality.

The final word went to Wells as they sneaked in for a try.