BARNSTAPLE’S unbeaten record came to an end against promotion favourites Bournemouth, who won 28-3 at Pottington Road.
It wasn’t so much the defeat which was cause for concern, but the mounting casualty list.
Stand-off Josh Squire, only just back full-time this season, suffered what looked like a broken leg below the knee.
Squire was brought down while making a jinking run and as he fell he twisted badly and sustained the injury.
Neil Giddy was hit from two directions at once when he took on the Bournemouth defence and hit the ground hard.
The game was held up for a good 20 minutes while Giddy was treated on the pitch and at one stage it seemed likely to be abandoned.
Fortunately, both injuries turned out to be less serious than first feared.
“Josh’s leg isn’t broken, but he does have nasty ligament damage to his ankle and Neil was concussed, but is on his feet with nothing worse,” said Barum’s director of rugby Kev Squire.
Lock John Childs got through the match despite sustaining a gashed chin that required 12 stitches in hospital on Saturday night.
With scrum-half Neilson Webber already out with a mystery virus contracted while on holiday, the last thing Barum needed was anymore injuries. Their only points were a Squire penalty in a first-half scoreline of 13-3 against.
Webber hopes to be fit to play this Saturday against Newbury, but it could be a while before Giddy or Squire reappears.
Squire senior said despite all the problems, Barum played well and the scoreline flattered Bournemouth considerably.
“Bournemouth are a good side who play very professionally, but they won’t do a Hartpury and go through unbeaten,” said Squire.
“I am not for a moment saying we should have beaten them, but the scoreline didn’t do us justice.
“The DVD recording of the match is going to be interesting viewing as of the tries they scored I would say one was very soft, one I would dispute wasn’t a try at all and one shouldn’t have been given because of a knock on.”
Other results: Brixham 2nd XV 31, Barnstaple 2nd XV 0; Brixham Albion 21, Bideford Quins 7.