Superb Cleve make it through to final

Published on: 01 Apr 2015

Picture courtesy of Gordon Lindsay

CLEVE are through to their first Bristol Combination Cup final since 2008 thanks to a superb victory over holders Clifton (writes Steve Hill).

Two tries in four minutes from centre Steve Bath just before the break plus 17 points from fly-half Ben Roberts – a try, two penalties and three conversions – against his old club helped underdogs Cleve clinch a memorable 32pts-13 triumph.

The Mangotsfield-based club now wait to see whether they will play Dings Crusaders or Thornbury in the final next month May, on a date and a venue to be confirmed.

Cleve, who are enjoying a memorable league season as they close in on promotion from South West One West, also had a close-range try from lock Dave Bufton as Clifton, who play two divisions higher, were comprehensively out-played.

Head coach Ryan Davis said: “We showed about 95 per cent of our potential against Clifton, I really believe that we’ve got more to come.”

Cleve have won the Combination Cup three times in their history, beating St Mary’s Old Boys in 1993 and 2006 and then overcoming Clevedon in 2008.

The club wrap up their league campaign with a trip to promotion rivals Ivybridge on April 11 before hosting Gloucester club Matson on April 18.

Cleve thumped Ivybridge 48-17 at home and had to battle hard for a 13-12 triumph at Matson on the opening Saturday of the season.

The Hayfields, meanwhile, will play host to Gloucestershire’s County Championship clash with Kent on May 16.

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