Regional 2 Tribute South West: Burnham-on-Sea 24 - 40 Wellington

BURNHAM-on-Sea RFC have begun the 2023/24 season off in defeat at home against Wellington RFC.

It was an entertaining battle that finished 24-40 in favour of the visitors at the BASC Ground.

Burnham didn't pick up a bonus point in the loss leaving them in tenth place in the Regional 2 Tribute South West table after round one.

Before kick off, the players, staff and supporters at Burnham-on-Sea held a minute's applause for club stalwart and legend Steve Paul who sadly passed away last month.

The club said: "He was an unbelievable work horse for our club over so many years and his work ethic inspired many of us to continue in the same manner."

There was a debut for Todd Stringer and a return to the squad for Scott Beard after some time off.

Despite the fresh faces in the squad, it was stalwart Tim Piper who opened the scoring for the season as he crossed to send Burnham in front after just eight minutes. Alex Watkins converted to make it 7-0.

Wellington tied the scores up in the 13th minute though as it was clear this match would be a high scoring one early on.

The Chiefs then went in front on the 20 minute mark as the visitors were capitalising on gaps in Burnham's defence.

Beard managed to cross for a try on his debut though and Watkins slotted the conversion to make it 14-14 after 38 minutes.

In the second half Watkins put the Stags back in front with a penalty conversion to make the score 17-14.

However Wellington responded immediately with another converted try and were up 17-21.

From here the visitors stepped up a gear and ran in try after try to run away with the game.

They scored their bonus point try and then a fifth try in quick succession and by then the score was 17-40 to Wellington.

But not willing to roll over, Burnham did pull one try back late on in the match, which brought cheers from the crowd.

A lovely chip from Tim Piper out wide gave space for Harry Macdonald to collect the ball on the bounce and go over.

Alex Watkins scored the conversion to make the final score 24-40.

Burnham now switch focus to next weekend when they take on Chard RFC at home on Saturday, September 9.