Anglo-Welsh Cup - Exeter, 16 March 2014, 15:00 local, 15:00 GMT
Exeter Chiefs (8) 15 - 8 (3) Northampton Saints (FT)

Match coverage:  Report

Summary

Time Score  
 

In the wake of Saturday's Six Nations climax, Exeter Chiefs and Northampton Saints have a difficult task in living up to this weekend's rugby standards, but Sandy Park plays host to a promising encounter between two sides fully deserving of their spot in this season's LV=Cup final.

1

Dean Mumm's home team will attack from right to left in these opening 40 minutes. Just how much of a difference will that host tag make for the Chiefs?

3 5 - 0

Exeter Chiefs channel their inner-Ireland, opting to kick for the corner when they get a penalty deep in the Northampton 22, and what a fine decision it was. Chris Whitehead is the man bundling over at the base of the maul, straight from the line-out. Great start from the hosts, full of intent.

10

Northampton looked slightly dumbstruck by the ferocity with which today's hosts came out of the blocks, but Glenn Dickson is helping to push Jim Mallinder's men back into the game. After scoring the opening try, Whitehead has kept up a bullish start to the match.

11 5 - 3

Where Exeter chose to kick for touch, Saints decide to take their chance in front of the posts and Dickson slots his first kick on goal.

15

There's an entertaining battle emerging at the scrum as the Chiefs take their turn to get a shove on at the set piece. Mallinder will be delighted that Samu Manoa is back in his pack after seeing what the opposition are up to at the scrum.

20

There's the first signs of a flare-up on the Sandy Park pitch as Ben White jumps to the defence of team-mate Henry Slade, who is dumped to the ground after attempting to run the ball back from deep. The handbags are put away after a couple of calm breaths and normal action is resumed.

22

The further we creep into this fixture, the more influence Kahn Fotuali'i is looking to have on the game. The Saints' scrum-half is blending a fine mix of direct, running play and well-placed kicking for the visiting outfit.

25

Saints' opening 25 minutes have been marred by the occasional slip-up in possession, but they're delightful to watch when they find their stride. Several pack members combine to open up play in the middle of the park before the likes of Ben Foden and Ken Pisi get the chance to stretch their legs down the left wing.

26

And again, Northampton look like the more dangerous party, except this time it's Ken's brother George Pisi who slices open the Exeter back line. Alarm bells are starting to ring for the home side.

30

Sandy Park erupts as Exeter manage to steal a Northampton scrum on their own five-metre line, alleviating the pressure that Mallinder's men were looking to exert upon the hosts. Pressure off the home team for now as they clear lines through Slade's boot.

33

It's an incredibly physical encounter that's unravelling here as backs from both line-ups continue to hammer into one another, and so far nobody has claimed an upper hand. That Saints have held some good possession, but a series a sloppy passes and missed opportunities is currently stunting their assault.

35

Exeter's heads can't help but dip slightly after watching fly-half Slade put a second penalty attempt wide of the mark. Had he scored both of his attempts, the Chiefs would be more than a try away from the visitors right now. Vital missed chances.

36 8 - 3

And at the third time of asking, Slade finally manages to send a kick through the posts, giving the Sandy Park locals something to cheers about.

40

Jamie Elliott surges through Exeter lines for the last, real attacking chance of the half, but the two sides remain finely balanced at the end of the first period. Northampton trail by five at the halfway mark, but there's everything to play for in a final that's yet to reach boiling point just yet.

40

We're back underway at Sandy Park. Both teams need only clean up their possession play slightly before the tries start rolling in.

41

Early scare for Exeter as Slade sees an attempted clearance charged down by James Wilson inside his own 22. Luke Arscott helps to clear matters up but that's a shaky way for the hosts to begin the second period.

45

Again, Exeter make some considerable ground up through use of their maul and once again, it's Whitehead controlling the pivot from its rear. Northampton are pulled up for impeding the movement, and Slade lifts Chiefs cheer by booming a sensational touch-finder deep into the Saints' 22.

48

Fetu'u Vainikolo gets to really put his foot on the gas pedal for the first time in this fixture and it sees Exeter make 30 yards down the left touchline. However, Saints manage to pinch possession back after bringing the marauding Vainikolo down, temporarily easing the pressure on their 22.

49 13 - 3

Dean Mumm, not for the first time this season, has touched down to push the Chiefs into a vitally increased lead that could well put Exeter on their way to silverware. Vainikolo again surges down the left flank, linking up with Kai Horstmann in support, who flicks the ball just inside for Mumm to tumble over under a mass of Northampton pressure.

50 15 - 3

And Slade gets this kicking attempt on target, too, stretching the hosts' lead.

53

Northampton's attack is piling the pressure on Exeter, particularly through the carries of hooker Mike Haywood at the moment, but the home team are frustrating their guests with some stern defence just in front of their own 22. Exeter really growing into this game as we progress.

57

Manoa is actively looking to make the difference for his side, and may have done just that after drawing the Chiefs defence into the middle of the pitch, leaving Alex Waller out on the wing with a possible overlap. Were it a swifter figure, they might have latched onto the pass flown in his direction, but the prop can only knock the ball on as it just about evades his grasp five metres out from the Exeter line.

61

Luke Arscott goes nail-bitingly close to extending the Chiefs' lead with a splendid dart from just inside the Northampton half, but Ken Pisi tracks back brilliantly to slap the ball out of his hands at the death. The result is a Saints scrum five metres out from their own line. Die-hard defending from Pisi.

64

It's beginning to reach fever pitch at Sandy Park, and there's a very specific cast of crew members from each club that are starting to have very heavy influence over their side's respective fortunes. Manoa, Fotuali'i and both Pisi brothers are pulling the Northampton strings, while Vainikolo, Arscott, Whitehead and Dollman are looking dangerous for the hosts.

66

Another Saints charge-down, and this time it's Arscott who sees his kick blocked. The Chiefs have looked comfortable for periods, but there's another warning sign of just how quickly this fixture could be tipped on its head.

68

Saints are really turning up the heat now and Slade is finding himself put under more and more pressure, more as a result of poor passing movement through the Exeter line than anything else. Northampton are able to press, put the No. 10 under pressure, and they're gaining ground through turnovers and penalties. Ten minutes left for the visitors to turn this one around.

69 15 - 8

Samu Manoa finally gets his breakthrough, and he's been knocking on the door all day. A brilliantly floated pass from Dickson goes over Exeter's heads in their own 22, and the committed numbers leave Manoa to trot over, almost unopposed. Dickson can't add the extras from the tee, but leaving us with a seven-point game.

73

Drama hits Sandy Park after Slade swings a crucial, crucial penalty onto the post, leaving the Saints with a lifeline as we head into the final five minutes. The visitors were penalised for not rolling away at the ruck, and just about cling onto some hope of winning.

79

Mumm is just a couple of minutes away from leading this Exeter team to what would be a memorable victory, which certainly hasn't come with its share of pressure being exerted on the hosts. Mallinder will know that on another day, his side would have already tucked away some of the chances they've received, but very particular lapses in concentration may have blocked the route.

80

And that's it! Exeter Chiefs are the 2013-14 LV=Cup champions after edging their way to a 15-8 win over the Northampton Saints, the club's first trophy in 143 years. The match ended with the home team under huge pressure, but the tale of the Chiefs' win has been dealing with that pressure and dishing it back in just a couple of acute, clinical moments. Terrific scenes for the home crowd at Sandy Park.

Timeline

Time Exeter Chiefs  Score  Northampton Saints
0 start of first half start of first half
3 Whitehead - try 5 - 0
11 5 - 3 Dickson - penalty goal
36 Slade - penalty goal 8 - 3
40+1 end of first half end of first half
40 start of second half start of second half
49 Mumm - try 13 - 3
50 Slade - conversion 15 - 3
51 Armand - sub on
White - sub off
Ma'afu - sub off
Mercey - sub on
Nutley - sub on
Clark - sub off
64 AM Waller - sub off
ECA Waller - sub on
65 Cowan-Dickie - sub on
Whitehead - sub off
Brown - sub on
Tui - sub off
67 Lewis - sub off
Thomas - sub on
69 15 - 8 Manoa - try
71 Autagavaia - sub on
KS Pisi - sub off
Haywood - sub off
McMillan - sub on
Craig - sub on
Manoa - sub off
74 AR Day - sub on
Dickson - sub off
80 end of second half end of second half

Notes

 
Result Exeter Chiefs won by a margin of 7 points
 
Ground name Sandy Park

Teams

Exeter Chiefs Northampton Saints
Tries Whitehead (3), Mumm (49) Tries Manoa (69)
Cons Slade (50) Cons none
Pens Slade (36) Pens Dickson (11)

Match stats

Exeter Chiefs   Northampton Saints
2 Tries 1
1 from 2 Conversion goals 0 from 1
1 from 3 Penalty goals 1 from 1
40.0% Kick at goal success 50.0%
0 Dropped goals 0
Kick/pass/run
18 Kicks from hand 12
136 Passes 150
103 Runs 140
404 Metres run with ball 384
Attacking
67% (100%/50%) Possession (1H/2H) 33% (0%/50%)
11 Clean breaks 14
16 Defenders beaten 18
10 Offloads 15
68 from 72 (94.4%) Rucks won 110 from 116 (94.8%)
0 from 0 Mauls won 0 from 0
11 Turnovers conceded 20
Defensive
169/18 Tackles made/missed 101/16
90.0% Tackling success rate 86.0%
Set pieces
9 won, 0 lost (100.0%) Scrums on own feed 6 won, 1 lost (85.7%)
13 won, 3 lost (81.2%) Lineouts on own throw 13 won, 2 lost (86.7%)
Discipline
9 Penalties conceded 12
0/0 Yellow/red cards 0/0

Exet stats

Pos   T/A Pts K/P/R MR CB DB OL TO Tack LO Pen Y/R
FB Arscott 0/0 0 2/5/9 76 3 6 1 1 3/0 0/0 0 0/0
W Vainikolo 0/0 0 0/4/9 69 2 4 3 1 4/0 0/0 0 0/0
C Dollman 0/0 0 1/4/9 32 1 2 1 1 9/1 0/0 1 0/0
C Shoemark 0/0 0 0/9/6 15 1 1 1 2 11/0 0/0 1 0/0
W Jess 0/0 0 0/1/7 27 1 1 0 0 4/0 0/0 0 0/0
FH Slade 0/0 5 5/26/8 38 0 1 0 1 8/3 0/0 1 0/0
SH Lewis 0/0 0 9/52/6 9 1 1 0 2 6/1 0/0 0 0/0
P Moon 0/0 0 0/5/3 6 0 0 1 2 9/1 0/0 1 0/0
H Whitehead 1/0 5 0/3/11 21 0 0 1 0 15/2 0/0 0 0/0
P Tui 0/0 0 0/1/5 2 0 0 0 0 4/4 0/0 3 0/0
L Mumm 1/0 5 0/0/7 18 1 0 0 0 16/0 3/0 0 0/0
L Welch 0/0 0 0/2/3 59 0 0 0 0 10/2 8/1 0 0/0
F Ewers 0/0 0 0/3/7 11 0 0 1 0 21/2 1/0 0 0/0
F White 0/0 0 0/2/1 0 0 0 0 0 10/0 0/0 0 0/0
N8 Horstmann 0/1 0 0/9/8 18 1 0 1 0 16/2 1/0 2 0/0
(R) Cowan-Dickie 0/0 0 0/0/2 3 0 0 0 0 3/0 0/0 0 0/0
(R) Brown 0/0 0 0/1/1 0 0 0 0 0 4/0 0/0 0 0/0
(R) Armand 0/0 0 0/0/1 0 0 0 0 0 12/0 0/0 0 0/0
(R) Thomas 0/0 0 1/9/0 0 0 0 0 1 4/0 0/0 0 0/0
Key T/A Tries / Try Assists Pts Points scored
K/P/R Kick / Pass / Run MR Metres Run with ball
CB Clean Breaks DB Defenders Beaten OL OffLoads TO TurnOvers
Tack Tackles made / missed LO LineOuts won on throw / stolen on opp throw
Pen Penalties conceded Y/R Yellow / Red cards

Nthmp stats

Pos   T/A Pts K/P/R MR CB DB OL TO Tack LO Pen Y/R
FB Foden 0/0 0 4/4/9 44 1 1 2 1 3/1 0/0 0 0/0
W KS Pisi 0/0 0 0/7/5 58 1 2 1 3 2/0 0/0 0 0/0
C TG Pisi 0/0 0 0/3/13 54 4 3 3 1 6/2 0/0 0 0/0
C Wilson 0/0 0 0/6/7 6 1 2 0 3 5/1 0/0 0 0/0
W Elliott 0/0 0 1/2/10 22 0 1 0 3 2/2 0/0 0 0/0
FH Dickson 0/0 3 3/13/11 8 0 2 0 2 9/2 0/0 1 0/0
SH Fotuali'i 0/0 0 4/68/8 23 1 0 2 2 10/1 0/0 1 0/0
P AM Waller 0/0 0 0/1/8 15 0 0 0 1 4/1 1/0 1 0/0
H Haywood 0/0 0 0/12/12 18 1 1 2 0 5/2 0/0 3 0/0
P Ma'afu 0/0 0 0/1/2 4 0 0 0 0 1/0 0/0 1 0/0
L Manoa 1/0 5 0/6/14 73 3 4 3 1 11/0 2/0 1 0/0
L CJ Day 0/1 0 0/4/4 2 0 0 0 0 8/1 2/1 2 0/0
F Clark 0/0 0 0/3/4 6 0 0 1 0 10/1 1/0 1 0/0
F Dowson 0/0 0 0/6/13 9 0 0 0 1 9/0 1/0 0 0/0
N8 van Velze 0/0 0 0/1/12 34 2 2 1 0 8/1 6/1 0 0/0
(R) McMillan 0/0 0 0/0/0 0 0 0 0 0 1/0 0/0 0 0/0
(R) ECA Waller 0/0 0 0/0/2 2 0 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 1 0/0
(R) Mercey 0/0 0 0/0/2 5 0 0 0 0 3/0 0/0 0 0/0
(R) Craig 0/0 0 0/0/1 0 0 0 0 0 1/0 0/0 0 0/0
(R) Nutley 0/0 0 0/0/3 1 0 0 0 2 2/1 0/0 0 0/0
(R) AR Day 0/0 0 0/12/0 0 0 0 0 0 1/0 0/0 0 0/0
(R) Autagavaia 0/0 0 0/1/0 0 0 0 0 0 0/0 0/0 0 0/0
Key T/A Tries / Try Assists Pts Points scored
K/P/R Kick / Pass / Run MR Metres Run with ball
CB Clean Breaks DB Defenders Beaten OL OffLoads TO TurnOvers
Tack Tackles made / missed LO LineOuts won on throw / stolen on opp throw
Pen Penalties conceded Y/R Yellow / Red cards

Other scores

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