MATCH REPORT: Tor 1st XV 25, Old Reds 2nd XV 8
Tor 1st XV recovered from a slow start to maintain their impressive home record with victory over Old Reds 2nd XV.
The visitors lie seven places below Tor in Tribute Somerset Premier but it looked like an upset could be on the cards early on before skipper Toby Payne settled his troops by leading from the front.
When moving the ball through the hands Tor looked in total control, while the forwards were comfortable running with the ball. The front row of Harrison Collins, Ashley Lester and Matt Sturgess took time to settle but took control of the scrum in the second half.
Tor started at sixes and sevens, knocking on from the kick-off and finding themselves five points down after a charge-down resulted in a try.
The visitors continued to have the better of the opening exchanges but fly-half Alfie Lee relieved the pressure with the boot and the converted a penalty after nine minutes.
From the restart, Tor pushed forward as centre James Austwick carved his way through to the five-metre line, only for the ball to be knocked on.
Arron Marshfield and Ethan Trebble-Westlake starting to dictate the lineout but Lee missed a simple penalty attempt from in front of the posts.
Chris Goodland’s quick tap got Tor moving again and, although wing Mark Richardson was bundled into touch one metre short, the hosts won the lineout and number eight Goodland scored from the resulting catch and drive after 23 minutes.
Old Reds forced a penalty to draw level five minutes later and continued to put the pressure on, with Matt Bisgrove sent to the sin-bin as a result.
However, 14-man Tor came alive as Goodland ,Westlake and Alex Gooby drove to within five metres and full-back Matt Colly got even closer before being pushed into touch.
After the break, Westlake, Lester and Marshfield took the ball forward as Tor spent the first ten minutes in the Old Reds half.
From a five-metre scrum, Goodland picked up and Payne sucked in the defence to allow Richardson to cross in the corner after 56 minutes.
With their tails up, every Tor player wanted to run with the ball and Old Reds were reduced to 14 players for ten minutes after pulling down a maul.
Goodland passed inside for Payne to dive over for a try on the hour mark, with Lee adding the conversion.
Tor absorbed some pressure before pushing forward again as Jordan Hunt returned a loose kick to the 22. The visitors had a second player sin-binned and scrums went uncontested, with Tor looking in total control.
Coley, Goodland and Austwick set up a ruck on the 22 and Hunt picked up the ball at top speed to score in the corner.
Tor man of the match: Chris Goodland.