Gordano through to South West Counties cup final

PUBLISHED: 12:05 14 February 2018 | UPDATED: 12:06 14 February 2018

Rugby ball.

Rugby ball.

Archant

Gordano reached the South West Counties cup final after recording an excellent victory over Barton Hill.

Gordano 25 pts

Barton Hill 19 pts

Gordano booked themselves into the South West Counties final after beating Barton Hill in the National Cup at Caswell Lane.

The game started badly for Gordano as Barts were awarded a penalty try and a yellow card against Dwaine Southley in the first five minutes of the game, but were not phased by this poor start and played some of their best rugby of the season in the next 35 minutes.

Gordano moved the ball well across the field and made ground with every attack. Their first try came from a long pass to second row Ollie Crichley, who finished off well in the corner.

Back up to a full side, the home side were looking to take the lead and kept the ball well. Centre Joe Rowsell crashed though under the posts to give an easy conversion for Alex Walder.

The half came to a close with Barton Hill on the attack and looking to score, but an interception by Southley did not just stop the visitors from scoring, but gave Gordano the perfect finish to the half and the ball was moved quickly to Noah Homes-McAdam, who set up Sam Hodge to score under the posts for a 19-7 half-time lead.

The second half was a tense affair with the weather conditions getting worse and Barton Hill used their well-drilled pack to make inroads into the Gordano half.

With 20 minutes left, Barton Hill drove their way over from a line-out to close the gap to seven points. Gordano were defending for most of the half and were unable to keep the ball when they did get it, with the visitors continuing to pick and go as the pitch cut up and passing began to get difficult.

Barton Hill levelled the scores with 10 minutes to go to set up an exciting finish. Gordano finally got some ball to play with and built some momentum which got them into the Barton half where a penalty gave Gordano a chance to take the lead.

Hodge slotted the 42-metre penalty for the lead with only five minutes left. Gordano were awarded another penalty, this time 43 metres out and once again Hodge slotted over the kick for a six-point lead with three minutes left.

Barton Hill are top of the Gloucester Premier for a reason and were not going to give up that easily and went looking to try to win the game. They kept up the pressure and when their winger broke down the wing, they thought they would score but great covering saw him bundled into touch just two metres short, as Gordano ran out 25-19 winners.

This was a great win for Gordano who worked tirelessly to get the result they deserved. Even though this was a big game, the large squad featured three colts’ players - Ben Critchley, Pete Atherton and Connor King, who all made their first team debuts.

Gordano go though to the final and will play at home against either Withycombe or Saltash on Febuary 24. Next week it a return to the league where Gordano travel to second-placed Imperial.

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