Minety continued their fine run of form on Saturday with a crushing 79-0 victory over lowly Devizes at Minety Fields. After excellent away wins over Frome and Chippenham, the village side knew that nothing less than a win and a “4 try” bonus point would satisfy against a Devizes team yet to win in the league this season.
In unseasonably warm conditions and choosing to play up the infamous Minety slope in the first half, the home side dominated play. After some clever interchanges involving forwards and backs, it was centre Jack Ward who opened the scoring in the 9th minute, crashing over the line for the first try, which was converted by scrum half Garin Garland.
Minety should have extended their lead shortly after but a penalty kick drifted wide of the posts.
Devizes initiated their first meaningful attack in the 20th minute but the greatly improved Minety tackling repelled all danger and quickly turned defence into attack.
Captain Andrew Hibbard collected the ball in midfield and left a wake of Devizes defenders before off-loading to flanker Josh Bull who drew the covering defence before executing a perfectly timed pass to allow full back Duncan Simpson to score Minety’s 2nd try in the 26th minute.
The third try came when Garland broke a tackle and was halted on the Devizes line. Bull, in close support, touched down and the successful conversion saw Minety 19-0 up.
The bonus point for scoring 4 or more tries in a games was secured in the 37th minute. With the Minety lineout and scrum affording quality controlled possession, Garland sent the ball along the back line and Del Murray, playing his first game at centre this season, drove through the Devizes defence before passing to flanker Tom Windle, who scored beneath the posts. Garland’s conversion took the half time score to 26-0.
With the benefit of the slope in the 2nd half, Minety pushed forward right from the kick off. Garland scored the first of a second half hat trick of tries in the 46th minute after hooker Tom Claxton and Hibbard had battered their way through the Devizes defence.
With Minety comprehensively on top, Garland and fly half Tom McAllister used every opportunity to fling the ball out wide. When winger Dave Cooke was halted inches from the line the ball was successfully rucked back and Ward scored his 2nd try and Minety’s 6th.
The impressive Murray sliced through the tiring Devizes defence in the 53rd minute for the 7th try, converted by Garland.
The Minety pack combined for a push over try from 15 metres out in the 62nd minute, Hibbard touching down and Garland again converting to send the score to 52-0.
Garland’s 2nd try came in the 66th minute after a forward’s move which saw Hibbard break through and six minutes later winger John Blair touched down.
Two tries in the last minute, the first from Garland and the second from Hibbard, who ran half the length of the pitch to score under the posts, ended the match with Minety 79-0 winners.
Minety’s win keeps the village side in 6th place but now only 4 points behind 5th placed Pewsey Vale and only 6 behind 3rd placed Bradford on Avon.
In the weekend’s other fixture, Matt Stone’s 2nd XV recorded their first win since November with a morale boosting 19-10 victory over Melksham.
Photographs now available in the Minety Gallery. Click here.