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Exeter ease to another home win


Haydn Thomas scored a late try as Exeter enjoyed a convincing win at home against Worcester

Haydn Thomas scored a late try as Exeter enjoyed a convincing win at home against Worcester

Haydn Thomas scored a late try as Exeter enjoyed a convincing win at home against Worcester

Late tries from Haydn Thomas and Chris Budgen put the seal on a convincing 33-9 victory for Exeter Chiefs who remain unbeaten at Sandy Park in the Aviva Premiership this season.

Exeter led 19-3 at half-time but the match then went off the boil, with the hosts only finding their rhythm in the final 10 minutes as they pulled further clear.

Gonzalo Camacho touched down for an early try, and Gareth Steenson booted 16 points, with Worcester's reply coming in the form of three Andy Goode penalties.

Exeter took the lead after full-back Luke Arscott put a grubber kick through and wing Camacho hacked on and won the chase for the try line. Fly-half Steenson added the extras.

The home side's smooth start continued as Steenson, who had seen an early attempt hit the upright, took advantage of the wind at his back by adding three penalties to give the home side a 16-0 midway through the half.

Worcester full-back Chris Pennell was then forced to race back and touch down behind his own line after the Chiefs mounted another attack down the right. The visitors continued to test the patience of referee David Rose as they conceded another penalty at the scrum and Steenson again found the target to stretch the lead to 19 points.

With time almost up in the first half, the Warriors again kicked a couple of penalties to the corner to set-up catch and drives. They came to nothing but then home centre Phil Dollman was penalised for a high tackle and Andy Goode reduced the arrears to 19-3 at the break.

Worcester started the second period with a lot more energy but Exeter's defence stood firm for almost 10 minutes until they were penalised for hands in the ruck and Goode made it two successful kicks from two attempts. The visitors had a try from replacement Ravai Fatiaki ruled out for a forward pass, and from the resultant scrum Exeter were able to clear their line.

Worcester tried to capitalise on Exeter errors to creep their way into the opposition half and the penalty count continued as Goode landed his third penalty with 10 minutes remaining. But the Chiefs sealed the game as breaks from Arscott and Rich Baxter pressed them towards the line. Scrum-half Thomas picked up at the back of the ruck and dummied before diving over the line with Steenson adding the conversion.

With five minutes remaining, Worcester's former Cornish Pirates flanker Sam Betty was sent to the sin-bin for taking out Arscott. Dave Ewers went close to crossing the try-line but was stopped short and his fellow replacement Chris Budgen went over, with Ignacio Mieres adding the extras.