McCann takes game by scruff of the neck
Cleve beat Winscombe on December 11
Cleve 14-8 Winscombe
CLEVE came through a tight game played in dreadful conditions to beat Winscombe with a last-gasp try.
Both sides were evenly balanced in inclement weather at the Hayfields.
Winscombe started well and were on top at the start but this was weather for the forwards and Cleve were up to the task with some strong carrying by their prop forwards.
Cleve had Harry Owens firing well, driving the forwards to the corners of the pitch.
The game was end-to-end and on 30 minutes, the Winscombe forwards drove over to take a 5-0 lead.
Cleve then went on the offensive but missed out by dropping the ball near the line. The ball was like the proverbial bar of soap as Cleve accumulated penalties and knock-ons.
The start of the second half saw Cleve up the gears, with some penetrating drives that resulted in Chris McCann going over near the posts. Owens converted to make it 7-5 to Cleve.
But again Winscombe replied with effort and commitment, which led to a penalty and put them 8-7 ahead.
Cleve fought hard to go back on top. and in the last minute a penalty came their way.
Owens kicked to the corner, Cleve won the lineout and drove to the line. There was a great deal of pressure and only slight movement as the packs locked horns near the line.
McCann, as usual, took the game by the scruff of the neck and drove over for his second try. Owens converted and there was no time left for Winscombe to come back, so Cleve won 14-8.
n On November 27 Cleve enjoyed a special game day with a reunion for old players.
The club house was flooded with old faces there to see old friends and watch the matches taking place at the club.
Cleve's veterans side took on Kingswood in a spirited game that saw both sides try to run the ball. The result was close but did not affect the good humour the game was played in.