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Trent College too strong for Hereford Cathedral School in Nat West Plate
10:02am Thursday 12th December 2013 in Sport
HEREFORD Cathedral School bowed out of the Nat West Plate at the fifth round stage.
But the city school played a full part in an entertaining game before two late tries by an impressive Trent side ended their involvement in the competition.
Cathedral's director of sport Richard Skyrme admitted before the game that his team would have to make no mistakes and that Trent would have to be slightly off their game if the home side were to go through.
But ultimately it was the physicality of the Trent pack which proved crucial in wearing down the Cathedral side, whose backs were more than a match for their Nottinghamshire opponents.
"It was a very creditable performance and similar to one or two of the other big games that we've had this year," said Skyrme. "Up front we are a lot smaller and it's difficult to get enough ball but when we do get a scrap or two we are dangerous."
Trent tried to establish their dominance with a spell of early pressure which was rewarded when their powerful hooker went over for an unconverted try in the 11th minute.
But Cathedral hit back with an excellent try nine minutes later.
Full-back Will Ford powered forward at pace down the flank from inside his own half before switching inside to Will Butler who found prop Will Teece who went over near the posts.
Fly-half Toby Austin added the conversion.
Trent missed a penalty before re-establishing their lead when they scored a second try following a line-out.
But Cathedal were unbowed and another excellent try followed just before the interval.
A tap penalty on the left saw the ball worked out along the line for Will Butler to dive over in the corner for a score which gave the home side an interval lead.
And the advantage was increased early in the second half when the outstanding Ford broke forward before instigating some swift, clean handling which ended with Ben Butler, brother of Will, going over wide out.
By now, however, Trent's powerful pack was gaining dominance and a converted try levelled the scores nine minutes into the second period.
An injury to Ford, who had to be helped off, shortly afterwards proved a turning point.
Trent continued to power forward and two tries late in the game sealed their win.
The only unsavoury moment came in between the late tries when the unfortunate Ed Mence was stamped on by one of the Trent backs who was shown a red card.
"The injuries to full-back Will Ford and prop Will Teece did not help but Trent paid a smart game," said Skyrme. "Once we had scored the try in the second half, they didn't throw the ball out much, played to their strength, which was their forwards, and we just couldn't get the ball.
"We have lost to a Premiership school today which is no disgrace."
Coach Guy Griffiths agreed.
"We played very well," said the former Hereford forward. "We are a small school -Trent play top fixtures every week and we don't, I think that was the difference.
"We are getting there with our fixtures but we have a little way to go yet.
"They are very powerful up front and just didn't lose any ball.
"Our back line is good but we just didn't get enough ball for them."