BRIDGWATER & Albion Rugby celebrated the start of 2022 with a gutsy hard fought win against a Crediton side who were formidable opponents at the end of which it was the hosts who ran out the winners to record their first victory for two months, writes Richard Walsh.

The start of the game was played in treacherous conditions on heavy ground with driving rain for the first 20 minutes, and it was Crediton who had the better of the opening exchanges.

On 10 minutes the Devon side were rewarded for their early pressure when they had a penalty on the 22 metre line in front of the posts which Ollie Avery-Wright slotted home.

Almost from the kick off Bridgwater were awarded a penalty which Stuart Heal kicked to level the scores.

The hosts then enjoyed a period of pressure during which they mounted several attacks and hit the upright with a penalty but sadly were unable to cross the try line.

Shortly after the rain stopped on 28 minutes, Heal kicked to touch close to the left corner and from the following line out Taylor Buller in his first game of the season crashed over for a try which Heal converted to make the score 10-3.

Crediton moved the ball well across their backs and came back strongly but the Albion defence held firm and there was no further score in the first half.

The visitors began the second half strongly and created pressure on the Albion line from the start, but the home defence held firm and managed to clear their lines.

The hosts mounted a number of attacks with both Will Monro and Kyran Devitt being prominent but they fell just short of being able to add to their score.

With 10 minutes to go Albion were awarded a penalty on the 22 metre line which would have left Crediton needing more than a converted try for victory, but the kick went wide.

Albion kept on driving forward and five minutes later they kicked a penalty into touch close to the left hand corner. Following the line out the Albion forwards drove towards the line but as they did so there was an infringement in the maul by a Crediton player who was yellow carded and the hosts were awarded a penalty try.

Bridgwater Mercury: Bridgwater rugby

In the dying minutes Crediton took the game deep into Albion territory and once again created a threat but there was no further score as the game ended 17-3 to Bridgwater and Albion.