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Richmond Women run league leaders Bristol close with a try bonus point performance
Richmond Women faced Bristol Ladies in a thrilling encounter, which saw last year’s champions take the game to the current table leaders.
Despite leading at half time, Richmond were unable to hold on but kept fighting to the end and scored the final try of the game, 33-27.
The home side got off to a shaky start conceding multiple penalties early on. The ref stamped his authority on the game and sent Abi Chamberlain to the bin for creeping off side in the first 10minutes.
Richmond used their excellent lineout to good effect and worked their way into Bristol’s half. Bristol were next to concede a string of penalties and scrum half Lynne Cantwell took a quick tap, catching some forwards off guard and Bristol Captain Amelia Buckland-Harry saw yellow for not being back 10 metres.
Bristol looked to unleash their powerful runners and Sarah Bern was first to get on the score sheet, getting in behind the defence, and the Richmond side couldn’t stop her pace and strength. The try was converted, resulting in an early 7-0 lead.
Shaken into action, Richmond regrouped and just as they came back up to 15 players, Marlie Packer was sin binned leaving Bristol with just 13. Playing tactically at the next scrum, the unstoppable force of Alex Matthews picked off the base at 8 and steam rolled her way to the try line to make it 7-5.
Running with confidence and showing their dynamism, the forward pack went on another rampage as Matthews broke the Bristol line, putting Richmond on the front foot. Ro Burnfield got her hands on the ball and crashed over the whitewash to get the second try of the day.
The lineout continued to be a strong attacking platform resulting in another try from a catch and drive. The home side went in at half time leading 15-7.
Bristol started the half strongly when Taz Bricknell dived over to score a try, converted by Claire Molloy.
Molloy then made another line break deep in Richmond’s 22 and she converted her own try to take the lead, 22-15
Another two tries in quick succession proved why Bristol have earned their place at the top of the table and Richmond suddenly found themselves trailing 33-15.
Not giving up without a fight, Alex Matthews was once again a thorn in Bristol’s side as she broke through several defenders and carried a few with her over the try line. Abi Chamberlain converted, bringing the score to 22-33.
It was a fight to the end as the clock ticked on, with the home side determined to get more points on the board and try to nudge a win. The opportunity came when Bristol had a 3rd yellow card as Sasha Acheson kicked the ball away from a Richmond penalty. Richmond opted for the lineout and the dominant drive marched Bristol back. Captain Emma Croker dotted the ball down for an unconverted try, 27-33, making it all to play for in the last few minutes.
Time ran out for Richmond as they launched another wave of attack, and the final score stood at 27-33. Richmond came away with two points and they now sit 6th in the table as Bristol continue their unbeaten run and remain top.
The 2nd Richmond team also played at the Athletic Ground against Henley and earned their first win of the season 17-15.[/one_half]
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Bristol Ladies withstood a second half come back from last years Champions Richmond Women to come away with their sixth win on the bounce.
The game started off with a spate of yellow cards. Richmond’s Abi Chamberlain was sent to the bin for an infringement at the ruck, with Bristol’s Amelia Buckland Hurry seeing yellow for failing to retreat 10 a few minutes later. Marlie Packer was then also sent to the sin bin for collapsing the maul.
During this period, prop Sarah Bern (sponsored by Fifth Consultancy) scored a stunning try, running from the half way line and dotting the ball down under the posts, which Claire Molloy successfully converted.
Richmond then proceeded to take advantage of the overlap, scoring three tries. Alex Matthews made her presence felt in all three scores, with the third coming from a driving line out putting the ball into the corner. None were converted. Half time saw Bristol head into the huddle down 15 – 7.
The second half kick off saw Bristol run out an invigorated team, with Taz Bricknell scoring from scrum half in her first appearance in a Bristol shirt this season. Claire Molloy followed her lead, dancing through the Richmond line with some exceptional footwork, and also converting her own score. Sarah Bern then scored her second of the afternoon, finishing off her line break, from 50ft out!
The final score of the afternoon for Bristol came through Premiership debutant Rownita Marston – playing her first game for the 1st XV today. The ball was worked out wide brilliantly through the phases, finding Marston who safely took the ball over the line. The score at 60 minutes was 15 – 33.
Richmond then turned up the heat with Alex Matthews breaking the Bristol defence and scoring right under the posts, successfully converted, and setting up the last 10 minutes to be tight, with the score halted it 22 – 33.
Bristol made things hard for themselves as Sasha Acheson saw yellow for kicking the ball away, Richmond then camped on the Bristol 22 and then secured a line out. A driving maul saw Richmond score in the corner, taking the score to 27 – 33. For the second week in a row Bristol held on for the final few minutes to take the bonus point victory.
Head Coach Roy Davies spoke to us after the game:
‘Today was full of positives, particularly with a team sheet containing three premiership debuts. A huge congratulations to Rownita Marson, Vicky Foxwell and Taz Bricknell. It was a test of the depth of our squad, and as expected we went through it. We’ve got an outstanding group of girls when they believe in themselves and then they are capable of winning games even against the current premiership champions. Claire Molloy was our Back of the game, playing at centre for the first time this season, and Sarah Bern is our Forward of the game her outstanding runs and pace’.
Written by Emma Bacon, Bristol Ladies Media – sponsored by Wring Group.
|4||Richmond||YELLOW||Chamberlain||0 – 0|
|8||Bristol||YELLOW||Buckland Hurry||0 – 0|
|10||Bristol||TRY||Bern||0 – 5|
|10||Bristol||CONV||Molloy||0 – 7|
|14||Bristol||YELLOW||Packer||0 – 7|
|20||Richmond||TRY||Matthews||5 – 7|
|32||Richmond||TRY||?||15 – 7|
|48||Bristol||TRY||Bricknell||15 – 12|
|48||Bristol||CONV||Molloy||15 – 14|
|56||Bristol||TRY||Molloy||15 – 19|
|57||Bristol||CONV||Molloy||15 – 21|
|60||Bristol||TRY||Bern||15 – 26|
|61||Bristol||CONV||Molloy||15 – 28|
|62||Bristol||TRY||Marston||15 – 33|
|70||Richmond||TRY||Matthews||20 – 33|
|71||Richmond||CONV||Chamberlain||22 – 33|
|76||Bristol||YELLOW||Acheson||22 – 33|
|76||Richmond||TRY||?||27 – 33|
Bristol Bears Women
|23/10/2016||2:30 pm||Women's Premiership||2016-17|
|Richmond Athletic Ground|
|The Athletic Ground, Twickenham Road, Richmond, Surrey, TW9 2SF|