Skip to main content
Match Report

Coventry’s 15-match unbeaten home run came to an end when Hartpury’s dominant fourth-quarter display sentenced the hosts to a disappointing 29-47 round five Championship defeat.

Matt Kvesic’s score gave Cov an early advantage and following Will Rigg’s fourth try in three games the hosts led 22-21 at the hour mark only to be blown away by the visitors’ four-try, 26-point blast.

Will Wand crossed in the dying seconds to clinch a try bonus point but it was by then a far-from-memorable day for another bumper Butts Park Arena crowd.

A strong start from Cov saw Hartpury concede two penalties the second of which ended with centre Jack Reeves being despatched to the sinbin following a collision of heads with Ryan Hutler.

And the hosts soon took advantage of their numerical superiority by shunting Kvesic over from a five-metre attacking lineout for a try which Evan Mitchell converted.

Hartpury then applied pressure of their own following a scrum penalty and when they kicked to the corner Jarrard Hayler was driven over for a try which Harry Bazalgette upgraded with a fine kick.

The visitors were briefly restored to full strength only for Bazalgette to be despatched to sidelines for obstructing Pat Pellegrini’s chip and chase.

And Coventry again exploited their temporary advantage with a neat front peel which ended with Tom Ball sending prop Elliot Chilvers over for his first try of the season.

The visitors forced another scrum penalty on the half-hour mark and after the ball was sent to the corner referee Jonathan Cook awarded them a penalty try when James Tyas collapsed the ensuing maul.

The home lock was duly sent to the sinbin and with their lineout under pressure Cov were forced to absorb some pressure in the closing minutes of a half which ended with a thumping David Opoku tackle preventing Jake Morris from exploiting a promising position.

This left Hartpury with a 12-14 interval advantage and the visitors extended this by seven points shortly after the restart when no.8 Josh Gray forced his way under the home posts for a score which Bazalgette upgraded.

Mitchell kicked Coventry back within one score with a simple 20-metre penalty and the hosts promptly regained the lead when Will Rigg broke down the right and after an exchange of passes with Ryan Hutler went under the posts for a try which Mitchell improved.

But Hartpury bounced quickly back and when they gained field position and a five-metre scrum from the Cov handling error that ended a lengthy kicking exchange the visitors eventually drove replacement prop Mikey Summerfield over for a try which Bazalgette converted.

This triggered a 12-minute spell during which Hartpury scored 26 unanswered points to clinch the spoils and bring Coventry’s long unbeaten home record to an end.

Gray was driven under the home posts by his pack for their fifth try and after Bazalgette converted, Hartpury immediately broke from a midfield lineout and sent replacement lock Danny Kite racing over for touchdown number six.

When Cov turned possession over in midfield replacement scrum half Matty Jones regathered Jack Davies’ kick ahead to round off Hartpury’s scoring spree before the hosts had the last word – and registered a try bonus point – through Wand’s converted 80th-minute try.


Coventry Rugby: Mitchell; Hutler, Rigg, Betteridge (Wand 52), Opoku (James 68); Pellegrini, Chudley (Lane 63); Chilvers (Cordwell 48), Poole (Stewart 59), Salt (Nairau 52); Tyas, Anstey (Nkwocha 52); Ball, Kvesic, Bartlett (Ryan 56).

Hartpury: Jones (Adderley-Jones 48); Johnson, Reeves (Smith 13), Mathews, Morris; Bazalgette, Austin (Jones 74); A.Benz-Salomon (Summerfield 63), Crane (F.Davies 60), J.Benz-Salomon (Gibson 74); Owen (Eite 74), J.Davies; Lewis, Hayler, Gray (Cobbett 78).

Referee: Jonathan Cook

Attendance: 3146

Half-time: Coventry Rugby 12-14 Hartpury


Coventry Rugby:

Tries: Kvesic (9), Chilvers (19), Rigg (55), Wand (80)

Cons: Mitchell (9) (55) (80)

Pens: Mitchell (52)


Tries: Harper (15), Penalty Try (30), Gray (45) (71), Summerfield (67), Kite (74), Jones (79)

Cons: Bazalgette (15) (45) (67) (71) (79)

Latest Results
Cornish Pirates 22
Coventry Rugby 12
11 / 05 / 24 • 14.30 • Championship
Coventry Rugby 27
London Scottish 14
03 / 05 / 24 • 20.00 • Championship
Coventry Rugby 54
Bedford Blues 19
20 / 04 / 24 • 15.00 • Championship
Nottingham 26
Coventry Rugby 52
14 / 04 / 24 • 15.00 • Championship
Coventry Rugby 64
Cambridge RUFC 12
05 / 04 / 24 • 20.00 • Championship