Bucks go down

By chris harrison - October 13 2009
Bucks go down
Oldge. Good game West Bucks travelled to Northallerton for a Tees Merit League fixture on a fine day for rugby.It soon became obvious that this was a good Northallerton team and they soon put the Bucks under pressure.
They had some lively backs and tough forwards who made life very difficult for West who so far this season had been getting things their way.
In the first half Northallerton scored 2 good tries (converting only 1) whilst the Bucks managed a solitary Scott Martin penalty.
In the 2nd half the Bucks started with much more purpose and for the first 20 minutes were camped in the Home half. However they only had another Martin penalty to show for it.
30 minutes into the half North moved the ball wide and the winger was able to score when the West defence stopped believing the ball carrier was out. Unfortunately the touch judge disagreed!
Northallertons next score was a tremendous effort. West attacked down the right touchline and kicked through. The winger picked up and set off on a terrific 50 metre run before linking with his other backs to allow the other winger to score after a 90 metre counter attack.
West had the last say when scrum half Martin broke blind from a scrum and chipped through. Winger Bulmer followed up and picked up to dive over when Martin was cut down Italian centre back style by the home winger. The referee, who was having an excellent game, played advantage before showing the red card to the ‘Italian’.
After the game it transpired that due to the cancellation of their 1st Team match Northallerton fielded a joint 1st/2nd XV which eased the pain of defeat a little.
But nonetheless this was an excellent game and it was commented that we would happily play this sort of team several times in a season than some of the easier fixtures we have had thus far.
The game was lost in the breakdown area where Northallertons forwards showed more steel and resolve in contact to win Bucks ball regularly.
Jackson and Oliver showed well for West in the forwards whilst often fighting a rearguard action. But MoM was probably scrum half Martin who showed tremendous grit and determination in difficult circumstances.