Taunton 43 Reading 23By Alan Glenny
October 21, 2009
Reading came away from National 3 South West leaders Taunton with a mixture of pride and frustration.
They produced a great deal of hard work and it was a match closer match than the scoreline would indicate.
Reading stunned the home side within two minutes of the start with a try from Mojee Matau who finished a smart backs move. Tom Goodhew, somewhat hampered by a calf strain, missed the conversion.
The first of a few crucial errors by Reading occurred shortly afterwards when a line-out in their own half was thrown long and possession conceded.
This began a penalty count against the visitors in the mid-teens, about twice that of the home side.
Fortunately for Reading, the first one was missed by Jon Martin.
Inside 10 minutes, Reading were behind after another penalty led to a try by Steve Dyer for Taunton, converted by Martin. The 7-5 score stood until the latter part of the first half.
In the meantime, Reading winger Sean Lynch was almost in the clear heading for the Taunton line, but unfortunately, his kick ahead found touch and some great defensive work kept the home side at bay.
The first turning point in the match came at the mid-point of the half when Sean Kenneally was harshly yellow-carded for persistent offside.
Taunton scored two tries in the following 10 minutes, the first from Gavin Hancock following the penalty from the offside infringement, then from skipper Nick Burnett after Reading lost possession from their own line-out, the latter try being converted by Martin.
A penalty kick from Goodhew added a welcome three points to make the score 19-8 at the break.
Within five minutes of the re-start, Reading were within a point of the home side. A try by Taniela Bakoso and conversion by Goodhew started an impressive attacking phase by his side. Minutes later Goodhew added a further three points.
However, a breakaway by Hancock restored the home side’s lead to eight points with full-back Matt Ayres adding the conversion.
The deficit was increased to 11 points mid-way with an Ayres penalty.
The visitors came back again shortly afterwards resulting in another try from Bakoso from a slick Reading backs move, and with the score within a converted try, it seemed anyone’s game.
However, two converted tries in the last 10 minutes from Taunton following Reading mistakes released the tension for the home supporters and gave their side a more flattering scoreline.
Martin went over for the first try followed by an effort from Hancock. Both were converted by replacement Sam Saunders.
READING: Dorliac; Lynch, Speight, Matau, Bakoso; Goodhew, Lester; Pryor, Fisher, Grierson, Kenneally, Uluikede, Veale, Heirene, Le Mar.