1st XV Match Report V Exeter Chiefs (Home) Sat 22/09/2007 

Match Report

Moseley 3 Exeter 36 - September 22nd 2007


MOSELEY: Binns; Bressington, A James, Adams, Sharples; M Jones, Ireland (Hunter, 60); N.Williams (Buxton, 72), McMillan (Caves, 67), Forster; Arnold, Atkinson (Bignell, 72); Mason, Evans, Lightowler. Replacements : Uzoigwe, MacDonald.

EXETER CHIEFS: Breeze (Kelly, 55); Luff, M Fatialofa, A Fatialofa, Drauniniu; Yapp, Stuart-Smith (Barrett, 77); Parkes, Nelson (Blythe, 67), Andrews (Dunlea, 55); Stevenson, Hanks; Slade (Wills, 63), Miller (Johnson, 40), Baxter. Replacement: Kingsland.

SCORERS: Moseley – penalty: Jones.

Exeter – tries: Baxter, Stuart-Smith, Stevenson, Yapp; conversions: Yapp (4); penalty: Yapp.

Referee: Richard Draper.

Smith sets sights on smaller fry
By Harry Jack in the Birmingham Post

Moseley chief coach Ian Smith feels his side has a lot to work on after he saw his side again suffer a heavy defeat against one of the title favourites.

Exeter Chiefs made the long journey to Billesley Common and came away with a big win, though the scoreline was slightly flattering to the full-time West Country outfit.

The visitors ran in four tries after the break as the pressure on Moseley told. But up until half-time the game was more even, and the home defence coped well with the threat of leading try scorers Jason Luff and Josh Draniuni.

Yapp, the club's record points scorer, eventually picked up 16 points from the game with a try in the second half.

Smith said his side had made it difficult for the visitors at times but needed to translate this into a strong performance over 80 minutes.

He said: "They were a well drilled forward line and in both the first and second half we had to soak up a lot of pressure from them.

"At times we did that well, particularly in the first half when we had some good possession ourselves but our application when we had the ball needs to be looked at.

"It was discussed in the changing room afterwards and nobody is hiding - we all know what we have to do to put it right."

Smith said he was pleased with the way his team had solved some issues which arose from the heavy 68-12 defeat at Northampton Saints.

He said: "Unlike the game at Saints, I didn't feel we were overrun until towards the very end maybe and that to me is a positive because we are learning to at least compete with strong forward lines.

"In the last two weeks we have played two teams who are promotion favourites, both full time professional outfits with a large staff and players on the bench of immense talent.

"With all due respect to some of the other part-time teams in the league, we should be looking to take points off them, such as Launceston next week and I feel we are more than capable of doing that."

Moseley's best chance in the game came when left wing Charlie Sharples and inside centre Jack Adams both lost their grasp on the ball in one move before they could land it over the line for a try.

Home supporters would have felt if those points could have gone on the board, they would have been able to compete in the second half, with the visitors going in only 10-3 up at the break, only Matt Jones putting them on the board with a penalty.

But the second half saw Exeter again enjoy the lion's share of the possession, and, kicking with the wind, their forwards proved too much in the end for the Moseley defence.

Smith said: "They had strength in depth on the bench which they used to their advantage and we had a few players out, like Richard Stott at lock who we took out as a precaution after he was injured last week.

"That's not an excuse, but they could bring on top quality players in the last 20 or 30 minutes and pick up the tempo which they did that's when they really started to make an impact on us."

Smith was disappointed with Moseley's indiscipline, which saw three players yellowcarded as at one point in the second half they were down to 13 men.

But he said generally he was pleased with the defensive improvement and they would need to go up a gear at Launceston next week where they would be looking for a good result.

Canadian Oliver Atkinson made a tidy debut at lock, being eventually replaced late on by Ritchie Bignell.


“Exe made to sweat by Moseley”

Exeter Express and Echo - 24 September 2007

Exeter Chiefs centre Mark Fatialofa admitted the scoreline flattered his side after they left Moseley 36-3 victors on Saturday. The five-try win was enough for a bonus point victory, which lifted the Sandy Park club up to second in the table - a point behind early leaders Northampton. But for long spells they failed to turn their superiority into points and they struggled to break down a determined Moseley side.

Eventually their extra quality told and three late tries leant an emphatic look to the winning margin. But Fatialofa, who impressed throughout, insisted Moseley had pushed them all the way.

He said: "I thought they had a lot of handy players out there and that really was hard work. We did not have the best of starts, we were a bit lackadaisical but we tried to address that in the second half, got in front and it was always going to be hard for them to come back against the wind."

The Samoan centre admitted he was at a loss to explain Exeter's slow start to the contest but felt they got their reward for an improved second-half display.

"We have got an extremely skilful squad but sometimes things don't quite go your way," he continued. "Perhaps that is what happened in the opening 15 minutes.
But in the second half we tried to play a more powerful game and play it down in their half. Our forwards got all over them and strangled the life out of them. It worked but we had to be patient.

"We just wore them down and that was how we got the tries at the end. It was reward for us but the score was probably a bit flattering. "The guys who came on (from the replacements bench in the second half) helped and it was a real squad effort," added Fatialofa, in his fourth season with the club.

"We are lucky to have so many good players. Old Wade Rico Gear came on at full-back and helped, he is a talented player. All the guys are playing a part at the moment and to leave Moseley with a bonus point keeps us heading in the right direction." -

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