A Bridgwater side decimated by injuries and non-availability came through a tough pre-season test at Hornets, writes Tony Pomeroy .
Hornets, under their new player coach, Alec Chase – playing against one of his former clubs – had a large squad for this final pre-season friendly whilst Bridgwater had only seventeen fit players.
They started with ten forwards on the field with two of them, Toby Williams and Joe Stradling playing out of position on the wings.
The visitors started strongly but in Hornets’ first attack after seven minutes, Bridgwater infringed and home full-back Sam Lloyd-Jones slotted an easy penalty.
Hornets then threw everything at Bridgwater and were rewarded with two tries in as many minutes, and it was no surprise when they increased their lead further.
A rare Bridgwater attack saw hooker, Gavin Knight, reduce the gap with an unconverted try.
On the stroke of half time, Alec Chase crashed over the line giving Lloyd-Jones an easy conversion and a 25-5 lead for the home side.
Bridgwater introduced two veterans – 45-year-old tight-head prop Shaun Lloyd and evergreen hooker Matt Hastie – at half time and after seven minutes young second row Rob Thompson (pictured) crashed over. New kicker, Matt House, who kicked well out of hand could not convert.
Drabble got the second try following a great pick and drive at the back of a scrum by young No8 Chris Webber, who showed immense potential.
Thompson got his second when he picked up at the back of a ruck and drove over under the posts.
The fourth try of the half came from Stradling to equalise the score at 25-25.