West 22 Billingham 23

By El Pedro - September 29 2012
West 22 Billingham 23
Try Despite a spirited fightback in the second half we came up a single point short against local rivals Billingham. A late try from Adam Coates gave us a chance of the win but the touchline conversion into a blustery wind was tough and drifted wide.

On the positive side this was a world away from the tame performance last time out against Sandal but in any game where you lose so narrowly it can be hard to focus on the positives. Billingham certainly came into the game as favourites but this game could have gone either way with the sides as evenly matched as the scoreline suggests.

The welcome return of Stu Waites at fly-half gave us a more organised feel behind the scrum but it was up front where the forwards once again performed superbly and didn’t deserve to be on the losing side. The scrum was solid throughout and in the second half in particular they put in a dominant performance but just couldn’t get the points to overhaul the visitor’s lead.

Billingham’s full-back Peter Evans scored all 23 points for his side and it was his 5th minute penalty and 12th minute try which quickly established a 10 point lead and at the stage things looked a little ominous.

But we fought back and after opting for a scrum from a penalty 5 meters out Stew Grazier picked up and dove over with Waites adding the conversion.

Billingham lacked their usual slickness in the backs but Evans did manage to nudge them further in front with a well struck penalty on 36 minutes after we were penalised for pulling a man back off the ball.

Waites replied with a shot of his own in the final minute of the half but there was still time for the visitors to strike a hammer blow as Evans slipped through a couple of tackles and sped away for a well finished solo try. His own conversion stretched the lead back to 10 at the break.

With the pack getting good returns from the pick and go it was no surprise when a series of these led to a try from replacement Nathan Myers, making a noticeable impact from the bench.

No sooner had Waites converted to bring us within three points we gifted Evans another shot at goal from an offside and the full-back made no mistake, stretching the lead back to six.

It would prove to be a crucial three points. We hammered away at the Billingham defence which held on until the 72nd minute when Adam Coates went over in the right corner after more good work from Myers but it left an almost impossible conversion into the wind for Waites. There was still plenty of time to play but the visitors never looked like letting the lead slip and they closed the game out well, pinning us in our own 22 and securing their third win of the season.

As disappointing as a narrow loss is we need to be encouraged by a return to form following three forgettable weeks. Carry on in this vein and the next win shouldn’t be too far away.

West: David Heckles, Greg Edwards, Andrew Cheslin, Luke Watson, Scott Butcher, Stu Waites, Ryan Painter, Ian Pinchen, Andrew Rollins, Adam Coates, Andrew Davies, Craig Gilmour, Dan Boatman [capt], Jon Boatman, Stew Grazier. Reps: Andrew Dixon, Nathan Myers, Andrew Foreman.

Tries: Grazier, Myers, Coates
Cons: Waites 2
Pen: Waites

Billingham: Peter Evans, Elliot Husband, Anth Hyndman, Will Turnbull, Craig Shepherd, Joe Evans [capt], Andy Evans,  Steve Smith,  Anthony Amos,  Steve Hutchinson, Craig Tennant, Paul Dalton, Dan Burns, Dave Robinson,. Mike Evans. Reps:   James Watson, Paul Shepherd, Danny Finney

Tries: P Evans 2
Cons: P Evans 2
Pens: P Evans 3

West 22 Billingham 23
Official West Hartlepool RFC (IP Logged)
30/09/2012 09:31
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Re: West 22 Billingham 23
Dogtrack (IP Logged)
30/09/2012 10:31
Hope you're right Pedro.
The forwards were as dominant as you say, but not in the line-out. Did we win one all game?
And at times that old problem of losing good possession was there, together with daft penalties.
But keep getting stuck in lads... the luck will turn.

Re: West 22 Billingham 23
oseander (IP Logged)
30/09/2012 20:21
it's nothing to do with luck, it's more about getting some backs that can tackle

Re: West 22 Billingham 23
To oseander (IP Logged)
30/09/2012 21:11
Yes thats a great point, lets get some new backs in so the lads who are playing can rest the injuries they are playing with. Oh wait, there aren't any players coming through to take the lads places who are struggling is there? F*** they all F*****d off to other clubs for the dosh!!!!! Dont forget you p***k these lads have played for free, year in year out training every week while working shifts. No wounder they hate staying in the club after games!

Re: West 22 Billingham 23
Will Turnbull (IP Logged)
30/09/2012 22:16
Get payed? Get no such thing.

Re: West 22 Billingham 23
MikeyBoy (IP Logged)
01/10/2012 09:01
The line out wasn't great but we did win a few, most of which were followed by impressive drives, including one that went half the length of the pitch.
Billingham didn't look as sharp in the backs as you would normally expect and so they were there for the taking, but it just took west a long time to turn pressure into points. We need to get a couple of wins soon as the pressure will only keep increasing

Re: West 22 Billingham 23
01/10/2012 11:35
We scored three tries to their two and could easily have won the game so we are back on the right track. (Not many sides will confine Billingham to two tries on a decent pitch although you can see them conceding a lot of points.)
Credit to Billingham for keeping us in our half in the last five minutes which is what ultimately won them the game.
Lets build on this and get a win at Burnage who I see have not yet won at home.

Re: West 22 Billingham 23
Dogtrack (IP Logged)
01/10/2012 15:40
"No wonder they hate staying in the club after games."
Explanation please.

Re: West 22 Billingham 23
just wondering??? (IP Logged)
02/10/2012 08:55
out of curiosity who are these players who have left for dosh???

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