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Unlucky seven leaves Turks buried under try avalanche

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Bermuda 55

Turks and Caicos Islands 3

Given the nature of Bermuda's encounter with Turks and Caicos, it would be easy to dismiss the lopsided win as nothing more than a good side beating a poor one.

Certainly the difference in skill levels was plain to see in their North American and Caribbean Rugby Championship clash, which is hardly surprising considering this is Turks' third year playing international rugby.

However, to write it off as nothing more than that would be to do a disservice to a Bermuda performance, which went a little way to exorcising a few demons from last year's disappointments.

In all, Bermuda ran in seven tries on Saturday, with Dan Cole and Durnferd Davis scoring two apiece, while there was a first international try for Paul Dobinson, one for Roedolf van der Westhuizen, the coach who made his debut, and Tom Healy got into the act as well. Patrick Calow, making his debut at fly half, added 20 points with the boot.

The forwards dominated in all areas and the sight of the Turks scrum leaving gouges in the turf as they desperately tried to stop Bermuda marching them 15 yards backwards spoke volumes.

“It was a tough day, we'll certainly learn from this,” Joe Ryan, the Turks captain, said. “Bermuda are an impressive side and it's always good to play a team like that to see where you are, and what we need to do to reach that level.”

Bermuda know how it feels to be bossed around up front, but this side have a better balance to it than the one that played against Cayman Islands, and the half-back pairing of Healy and Calow made the most of the space their forwards created.

It also helps when you score a try in the first 36 seconds, with Cole touching down in the far corner after Jahmal Misick, the Turks flanker, had found himself isolated straight from the kick-off and Bermuda turned the ball over. Such was Bermuda's dominance up front that Turks had no choice but to resort to infringing at the breakdown whenever Bermuda got in sight of the tryline in the first half.

Ryan Hinkson, the referee, eventually tired of the sound of his own whistle and sent Bjorn Griffith, the hooker, to the sin-bin, but not before Calow had kicked four penalty goals to put Bermuda 17-0 up at half-time.

A man up Bermuda moved farther ahead through Dobinson and Davis, and while parity in terms of numbers was briefly restored, it did not last, as Sholen Robinson became the second Turks player to see the yellow card, for collapsing a maul.

Healy, Davis and Cole took the score to 48-0 before Turks eventually got on the board with a Gareth Butler penalty goal. Fittingly, the forwards had the final say, with Van der Westhuzien rumbling over from close range two minutes from time and Calow adding the extras.

Hauled back: Davis is grabbed by Griffith during the first half of Bermuda's game against Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)
Bermuda Rugby: Bermuda v Turks and Caicos Islands. (Photo by Akil Simmons)

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Published March 07, 2015 at 6:40 pm (Updated March 09, 2015 at 2:31 am)

Unlucky seven leaves Turks buried under try avalanche

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