West 43 Malton & Norton 31

By El Pedro - December 17 2017
West 43 Malton & Norton 31 A high scoring encounter with Malton & Norton brought a much needed win in the final league fixture before the Christmas break.

With numerous postponed games and teams picking up wins the bottom half of North One East is looking very congested as 2017 draws to a close. There are only 10 points separating the 7 teams and the second half of the season looks to be a closely fought contest to keep out of those relegation spots.

With things so tight home wins will be critical and for much of the afternoon this looked like being a comfortable West victory. We led 31-7 ten minutes into the second half but a spirited fightback from the visitors had us on the ropes and needing two late tries to be sure of the points.

It was the Yorkshiremen who got the opening score after just 4 minutes from fly-half James Bulmer but we dominated the rest of the half both in territory and possession. Liam Bailey levelled things up with a strong finish after an overthrown Malton lineout left him in space and then we took the lead when a super pass from Zac Southern gave Liam Checksfield a simple run-in.

Checksfield got his second on 25 minutes when the ball went loose from a Malton hand near half way and he hacked the ball through twice before comfortably touching down before the covering defence could get back.

Hilditch M&N

On the stroke of half-time we were over for our fourth try only for Will Hilditch to be tackled out of the back of the in-goal area trying to run the ball round behind the posts. Thankfully it wouldn’t prove to be a crucial moment in the game!

We continued our dominance at the start of the second half and slightly fortuitous interplay between Zac Southern and Gavin Painter made a hole for Liam Austwicke and he raced away from almost half-way to score under the posts (pictured). Painter added the fifth try himself five minutes later when he broke a tackle at the side of a ruck after several phases of pressure in the 22. With the score now 31-7 - cue the Malton & Norton fightback.

A combination of missed tackles and better ball retention led to scores from both second rows, Andy Mitchell and Alistair Fothergill with Ryan Painter despatched the sin-bin in the run up to the first try for not rolling away. The second try came on 63 minutes and a now buoyant visiting team raced back to the restart, sensing the comeback was on. Three minutes later they had their fourth try, this time prop Nick Salisbury crashed over to leave the West defence on their knees and looking beaten, despite still leading by 3.

It set up a tense final 10 minutes where thankfully we managed to regain some composure and keep our hands on the ball for longer than one or two phases.

Checksfield Try M&NWe rolled a maul deep into the 22 on the right side which created a big overlap on the left and Checksfield was once again on hand to finish off the score. Painter’s conversion missed but it pushed Malton two scores adrift so when they were awarded a long range penalty shortly after the restart, Bulmer opted to kick the goal to bring them back to just 5 points behind at 36-31.

We pressed again to try and finish the game off with several lineouts and scrums 5 metres from the Malton line. They repelled the pressure for a while but when Checksfield was the spare man on the wing again, ready to walk in for a simple fourth try, Bulmer made sure the ball didn’t get that far with a cynical knock-on which resulted in a penalty try.

With normal time just about expired the seven points finally ended any chance of a comeback and a collective sigh of relief could be heard around Brinkburn.


West: Austwicke,  Hillditch, Youll, G Painter, Checksfield, Southern, R Painter (capt), Hadwen, Foulds, Rollins, Linighan, Bunter, Bailey, Butcher, Turner.
Reps: Wood, Peacock, Miller

Tries: Bailey, Checksfield 3, Austwicke, G Painter, Penalty
Cons: G Painter 3
YC: R Painter

Malton & Norton: Tenge, Page, Foan, Rangiuira, Dyantjies, Bulmer, Angus, Salisbury, Welch, Featherstone, Mitchell, Fothergill, Corner, Lowry, Hughes.
Reps: Turnbull, Read, Vasconcelos

Tries: Bulmer, Fothergill, Mitchell, Salisbury
Cons: Bulmer 4
Pen: Bulmer

West 43 Malton & Norton 31
Official West Hartlepool RFC (IP Logged)
17/12/2017 10:49
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Re: West 43 Malton & Norton 31
Rozzy 1 (IP Logged)
18/12/2017 15:28
Another spot-on report from Pedro.
At times we looked like a proper team, especially either side of half-time.
But at other times we looked like a disorganised bunch who didn't know how to tackle.
Still, it was better than some previous performances.

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