Exeter Athletic U13s hosted Exmouth for a midweek fixture, played in wonderful conditions at Oil Mill Lane.  Exeter kicked off and quickly put Exmouth under intense pressure with a strong defensive set, great line speed and forced them to play on the back foot.  It wasn’t long before the first score of the game – Exeter had wave after wave of attack, recycling the ball well at the ruck and following some slick passing, Ben Waycott scored in the corner.  As a bit of fun and in preparation for next season, conversions took place and Jamie Howick slotted with ease.  With Exmouth electing to receive the kick off, Exeter continued their strong defence and forced the turn over.  Despite facing a much bigger pack, our scrummaging was effective (great control by Emre Demir & Timmy Brookes at prop), working well as a unit and essentially dominated the set piece throughout the match with some excellent hooking from Freddie Clarke and Ollie Williams.  The 2nd try came soon after, which was an exact repeat of the first – the ball going out wide and Ben Waycott finishing in the corner; Jamie Howick converting.   However, Exmouth responded well and soon got on the scoresheet themselves, following some great forward dominated phase play and then getting the ball out wide for a fine try, which was converted.  Naturally, Exeter were disappointed to concede and normal service resumed with the remainder of the 1st period being played in the Exmouth half.  After a marauding run from Timmy Brookes and quick phase play, with excellent breakdown work by Rhys Myers, Exeter began to dominate again and it wasn’t long before Ben Waycott scored his hattrick, converted by Jamie Howick.   

Halftime: Exeter Athletic 21 – Exmouth 7

The 2nd half continued in the same vein with Exmouth having the majority of possession in their half but going backwards at a rate of knots; Exeter were totally dominant in defence and strong in attack, albeit the final pass going astray on a number of occasions, preventing a few more tries, which was slightly uncharacteristic.  However, it wasn’t long before Exeter extended their lead – with great line speed, Fly Half Charles Edwards intercepted on the half way and scored under the posts, converting his own try.  With Exmouth starting to tire, Exeter were camped in their half; the attacks kept coming, with some wonderful direct running from Harlan Doble and Owen Blackmore, coupled with quick ball from scrum half Elliot Cunningham, slick hands from the backs and it wasn’t long before Exeter scored again with Jamie Howick touching down after some wonderful phase play, converted by Charles Edwards.   Exeter kept the pressure up and forced Exmouth to run out of their half, but without success – whether it was effective defence out wide by Max Blewett and Cody Lester or our dominant pack providing a welcoming party for their big lads, the door remained firmly closed!  Exmouth finally changed tactics and kicked out of defence, but this was dealt with comfortably by Charlie Sheppard at full back.  The game finished with Exeter camped in Exmouth’s 22, although not scoring again.  Overall, it was a fabulous performance by the boys and it was pleasing that they were working well as a team – strong in defence, and taking their chances well in attack and therefore beating a competitive Exmouth side.  It was also great to see a large number of supporters for a midweek game and the boys certainly appreciated it.  A big thank you for Exmouth agreeing to the fixture and providing the referee, which was much appreciated. 

Final score:  Exeter Athletic 35 – Exmouth 7

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