West 19 Percy Park 19

By El Pedro - September 17 2017
West 19 Percy Park 19 A thrilling draw was the end result of a topsy-turvy game with Percy Park - both sides missing chances to win, the best of those being the last kick of the game.

There were plenty of points in the early stages with West mostly on top but the visitors showing how dangerous their runners could be in broken play. Will Hilditch crossed for the first try after a close lineout fell kindly to him and nipped into the corner with only 2 minutes gone. We were attacking again in the Park 22 minutes later only for the ball to be turned over and full-back Toby Davison set off a blistering run all the way up-field to level the scores.

Gav Painter pushed us back into the lead with a well struck penalty after Park were penalised for crossing on 7 minutes but he saw a second attempt sail wide on 12 minutes after a high tackle saw Andrew McGrath despatched to the sin-bin.

The man shortage seemed to galvanise the visitors and they dominated possession and territory – looking threatening but failing to add any points. It was inside the final 10 minutes of the half when we eventually established some good field position thanks to two penalty kicks to the corner and it led to a try made by the Painter brothers. After some solid carries from the forwards the sniping Ryan sent Gavin in for a tidy finish although he was unable to add the conversion.

We continued to press into lengthy first half stoppage time but a key moment would come in the 48th minute of play. We won a turnover penalty on half way but a scuffle for the ball afterwards led to the penalty being reversed. Park took a quick tap and a flowing move led to a try from number eight Michael Langlands under the posts, meanings Michael Grove’s conversion left a half time score of 13-12. It was a cruel blow right on the half time whistle after we had held on well for the majority of the half and taken our scoring chances when they were there.

The second half was more of a cagey affair and with us now playing into the wind we were forced to retain possession in our own half and struggled to advance much over the half way line. A good break from Ryan Painter after the ball was ripped out in a tackle led to some possession in the 22 and we thought we had the crucial score only for play to be brought back for a forward pass. Eventually we had to settle for another penalty from Painter but the slender four point lead always looked in danger, especially with the counter-attacking threat of the Percy Park backs.

In fact it was less counter-attack and more bludgeoning power that led to Park’s first lead of the game just 6 minutes from time. A kick to the corner set up the platform and powerful carries blunted the defence before Phil Morse went in for the score and left a simple conversion for Grove.

Now trailing by three points and looking fatigued after a gruelling defensive effort against a much bigger side we got back in the game thanks to a spot of ill-discipline from the visitors. After aiming a big clearance kick down field from inside their own 22 the referee took exception to something said to him and brought play back for a West penalty, almost in front of the posts.  Painter squeezed what should have been a simple kick just inside the right post but the scores were levelled up at 19.

With "Crazy Craig" Hadwen on for his league debut at the age of 35 , both teams  were intent on trying to win the game and the new law variations allowing a kick to touch from a penalty after time has expired we were treated to another 10 minutes of play.

CeeJay Beales 550

We were pressing for most of this time with replacement CeeJay Beales (above) putting his mark on the game with a run up the left which looked like finishing with a superb try only for him to be stopped by a high tackle. We opted to kick for the corner rather than a shot at the posts and into the strong breeze but the danger was cleared.

Park also had chances in a fascinating climax to the game. After hammering away at the visiting defence we eventually earned a kickable penalty when another of the new laws saw Park penalised for kicking the ball through a ruck. Again it was in a straightforward position, fairly central and on the 22 but Painter skewed his kick wide and both teams had to settle for 2 points, neither probably satisfied with that outcome as both could have a case for deserving the win.


West: Mallinson, Armstrong, Youll, G Painter, Hilditch, R Painter, Wood, Rollins, Key, Linighan, Bunter, Foulds, Barker, Turner
Reps: Beales, Hadwen, Siddle

Tries: Hilditch, G Painter
Con: G Painter
Pens: G Painter 3

Percy Park: Davison, Faatau, Greswold, Morse, Reece, Grove, Gilmore, Wafer, Dubois, Cook, Phillips, Thompson, McGrath, Lake, Langlands.
Reps: Kidd, Sutherland, Caulfield

Tries: Davison, Langlands, Morse
Cons: Grove 2
YC: McGrath

Referee: Tony Jenkins [Durham Society]

West 19 Percy Park 19
Official West Hartlepool RFC (IP Logged)
17/09/2017 10:19
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Re: West 19 Percy Park 19
LesterP (IP Logged)
17/09/2017 11:29
Sounds like a well earned draw in the end and a good match? Great photos by the way - Kathryn ?

Well done Craig H - great achievement.

Update from The Rec' not good though - Travellers Rest are already 3-0 down to a very good Southwick XI in The Cup. The lads are trying to play one touch Ole/Barca style but The Council have not cut the grass and they have no subs so they are looking a bit tired. I had a quick word with TR Goalie when Jess ( my Labrador) went to get the ball for him after No3 - No Nets put up either - I said " Come on Son- plenty of time left" and he said "Aye mate, plenty of time for them to make it 6 !!" LOL. You can't beat a sense of humour in the middle of a crisis.Southwick No9 is unplayable; only a slightly built lad but runs like a Greyhound.

Re: West 19 Percy Park 19
Rozzy 1 (IP Logged)
17/09/2017 11:31
A game full of plus and minus points from the West angle.
The pluses included the way a young team got stuck in against much bigger opposition, doing well to keep the space for their pacey backs to exploit down to a minimum.
The big minus was the missed tackles and our loss of possession in the tackle.
But overall, a good performance that gives promise for the future.
A good point has been made in another thread ... calling off the Stags game is an embarrasment.
We'd have won against Percy Park and Malton & Norton if we'd had a full squad to pick from. No reflection on the lads who have come in, but there's no substitute for experience.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 17/09/2017 17:01 by Rozzy 1.

Re: West 19 Percy Park 19
El Pedro (IP Logged)
18/09/2017 13:58
A Percy Park take on things


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