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GALLERY: Goodman scores a hat-trick as Devonport Services beat Saltash in final pre-season test

TOM GOODMAN scored a hat-trick of tries as Devonport Services overcame Saltash 29-0 at Moorlands Lane on Friday night in their final pre-season match.

The former Brixham back touched down twice in the first half and once in the second, with Kyle Browne and James McQuillan also crossing the whitewash.

Western Counties West outfit Saltash, who have lost experienced scrum-half Olly Mullberry to Plymouth Albion, did have some good spells of possession, but South West One side Services defended well and denied them a score.

“I think we are going in the right direction,” said Services head coach Mike Lewis after the match.

“I think both teams will say the game was a bit scrappier than we wanted it to be, but at the same time I think we both got something out of it.

“Our defence might not have been the best organised but was probably the hardest working and it made it hard for them to score.

“The scoreline does flatter us as some of their attacks were fantastic and they have got so much potential in their team. They were missing a few players and when they come back, I think they will be a force to be reckoned with. They really tested our defence.

“Sometimes we were defending for 12 or 13 phases and then give away a penalty and be under the cosh for another five or 10 phases. But I thought our defence was really good.

“In attack, we tried to force it a bit too much. If we do that in league games against bigger and better teams we will be punished. We need to make sure we hold on to that ball a bit better.”

On whether it has made team selection for next week’s opening league match against Newton Abbot easier, Lewis said: “I think it has asked as many questions as it answered. The seconds did really well, we also have a few boys coming back from injury and a few more available next week, so it is going to be a tough selection.”

Saltash’s new head coach Steve Down was pleased with his side’s display, despite the defeat.

“It was a loss but we were really, really happy with the performance,” said Down.

“We had a lot of young lads in and a lot of what we have done in training came together. We were happy with our shape. We will take a lot from the game as they (Services) had a very good defence.”

Despite playing up the slope, Services led 19-0 at the break, with Goodman going over on the right following a scrum move in the 15th minute.

Browne then scored Services’ second nine minutes later after great play by Corey Jamieson before Goodman got another with the last play of the half.

Forward McQuillan scored within two minutes of the restart but Services then had to wait until the 69th minute to get their final try when Goodman again went over on the right.

Meanwhile, Services’ second team enjoyed a 78-0 win over Saltash’s seconds.

Josh Richardson got a hat-trick for Services, with Andy Tillbrook and Charlie Crichton getting two and Dino Bozic, Harrison Slade, Jonah Moore, Mike Rickard and Bryan Milford also crossing for tries.

Elsewhere, Ivybridge’s second team enjoyed a good 17-14 win over Cornwall/Devon League Topsham at Cross-in-Hand on Friday night.

Ivybridge’s first team will play higher league Taunton Titans away on Saturday in their final pre-season match.

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