West 17 Cleckheaton 11

By El Pedro - November 5 2017
West 17 Cleckheaton 11 We battled our way to a much needed victory over Cleckheaton, ending a slide of five successive defeats and recording our first win since the opening day of the season.

It was no less than we deserved for a gutsy display, not without mistakes but not lacking in effort or commitment. Closing out a narrow win after so many defeats is never easy and will do our confidence good for games to come.

Gavin Painter contributed 12 points to the cause and it was his boot that got things underway with a penalty after just 2 minutes following a high tackle. We went on to dominate the early stages territorially but failed to create any clear cut scoring chances.

Painter and Cleckheaton fly-half Mike Swetmen exchanged missed penalty attempts before the visitors got the first try of the afternoon just before the half hour mark. Pressure came from a dominant maul and powerful ball carrying from Cleckheaton’s big forward pack. With space now generated out wide the ball was moved along the backline and last defender Joe Willis committed to an interception attempt , only to see the ball sail over his head and leave Pat Foulstone with the simplest of run-ins. Swetman’s conversion missed but he would extend the lead before half-time with another penalty after we killed the ball on the line when a try looked inevitable. Ryan Painter received a yellow card for the offence and we were probably relieved to only concede the three points.

Gavin Painter aimed a long but straight shot at the posts on the stroke of half time but it sailed wide to leave the half-time score 3-8. His boot was in action again early in the second half but another kick slid wide and as the misses added up it began to look as though we could be left wondering what might have been. However, skipper Carl Miller, on as a half-time replacement, added some ballast in the ball carrying department and it was his break and offload that set up a great position deep in the 22. As the ball came out to Painter he darted for the line to touch down despite a high tackle almost stopping him short. With advantage played and the try awarded, Painter dusted himself off to add the conversion for a 10-8 lead.

Another penalty attempt drifted wide as we tried to add some breathing space to the scoreline and we had to wait until 9 minutes from time when a rare stolen lineout led to a try for Scott Butcher.

Butch Try Cleck

The visiting lineout had been working well throughout most of the game but a clean steal at the front gave us good attacking ball and Butcher took the ball at pace to burst through a gap and run round under the posts for a simple conversion.

The try gave us the cushion of a two score lead but Cleckheaton weren’t about to give up and worked their way back into the 22 with some of the best ball retention seen from either side in the game. They settled for a simple penalty from Swetman to close the gap to single score with anxious looks around the ground as to how long was left on the referee’s watch. The last few minutes weren’t without scares but the defensive effort was terrific against a much bigger side and a turnover on half-way brought the end of the game.

Despite a welcome four points the league table looks much the same with all the teams around also recording victories but with three out of five games before Christmas at home more of the same effort seen today should bring more of the results.


West: Hilditch, Beales, Youll, G Painter, Willis, Southern, R Painter, Key, Rollins, Coates, Linighan, Rafferty, Baggs, Butcher, Turner.
Reps: Miller, Foulds, Peacock

Tries: G Painter, Butcher
Cons: G Painter 2
Pen: G Painter
YC: R Painter, Baggs

Cleckheaton: Wilson, Marsden, Hayward, M Piper, Foulstone, Swetmen, Bickerdike, Turner, Thrower, Jackson, Piercy, Pearson, Cherryholme, Plunkett-White, Seddon.
Reps: Crowther, Barnard, A Piper

Try: Foulstone
Pens: Swetman 2
YC: Cherryholme

Referee: Adam Robson [Yorkshire Society]

West 17 Cleckheaton 11
Official West Hartlepool RFC (IP Logged)
05/11/2017 10:19
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Re: West 17 Cleckheaton 11
Dave Picken (IP Logged)
05/11/2017 10:49
Thanks El Pedro. Bucks won their cup tie against Sedgefield II's 48-12 (or close)

Re: West 17 Cleckheaton 11
Rozzy 1 (IP Logged)
05/11/2017 15:28
That was a game of two halves for West, the second a great deal better than the first.
Before half-time we looked disorganised, gave the ball away cheaply and put ourselves under extra pressure with some awful passing.
Thank goodness it got better in the second. But let's not allow the result to fool us ... it looks like being a long, hard season.

Re: West 17 Cleckheaton 11
LesterP (IP Logged)
05/11/2017 15:51
The match report & Rozzy's comments are highly accurate and sum it up perfectly I think.

I thought it was a great game to watch and to win though. Two sides playing very physically and with just the right amount of feistiness without being ugly, just what you would expect from two teams with their backs to the wall.

Butch's try for me summed up exactly the way we should be playing at this time of the year. Retention of possession mixed with some very good tactical kicking to get into the right field possession then hit them hard with a strike move from s good set piece - great stuff; not many teams would have stopped that from being a try.

Not many hookers will hit the target 100pc of the time at this time of the year and so I think we can steal a lot of ball at the front of the line out or at least force a scrum by pressurising the thrower; there was quite a few wonky Clecky ones yesterday that went unpunished actually and so it's worth kicking us into position sometimes, even if it does mean giving the other side a line out, providing we contest it well.

The bench impact was impressive I thought. The Captain looked like he had never been away and J Fouldes tackled like a Mad Dog. Plus we even managed to still have one member of The Masterace kept back in reserve, although putting 3 Gingas on at the same time would have been a bit unfair to be honest 😁😁

Well done though lads - a win is a win - onward & upward now.

Re: West 17 Cleckheaton 11
06/11/2017 12:54
Poor game I thought. We can't afford to keep giving away possession and if the kicker is off form give someone else a turn. We make things far harder than they need to be. On the plus side the old spirit seemed to be back and no doubt Rover and Out was unhappy to see the win.

Re: West 17 Cleckheaton 11
RoverandOut (IP Logged)
06/11/2017 16:18
Thank you for your interest as you so often say to me.

Well, the result did nothing for me in the Prediction League if that’s what you mean.

It was a good job you did win otherwise you’d have slumped to the bottom.

Was a day for a few funny results.

Here’s one for you then, how many times does Painter have to be carded before the penny drops?

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