West 23 Morpeth 13

By El Pedro - January 14 2018
West 23 Morpeth 13 A fantastic win against table topping Morpeth sees us climb out of the bottom three. 

Not many would have predicted this scoreline before kick-off with the visitors from Northumberland having lost only twice prior to this game and run up a 43-0 win in the reverse fixture.

But West can compete with any team in the league at Brinkburn and so it proved with probably our best defensive performance of the season, restricting the visitors to only one late try and showing the sort of intensity that has often been absent in our work without the ball. Morpeth had a difficult afternoon, struggling at the lineout despite dominating the scrum. Their ball carriers had plenty of success with some dangerous breaks from the backs but all too often these happened in their own half and we were able to recover without conceding points.

It wouldn’t be a West game without some late changes and there were a couple again with Craig Hadwen starting in the front-row for Ross Wood who stayed on the bench where he was joined by Jay Corbett.

Morpeth started brightly with a couple of breaks from dangerous full-back Jonny Ward but we had the first scoring opportunity with a long range penalty from Gavin Painter, unfortunately it dropped short. The visitors remained on top and looked like getting the opening try with a rolling maul in the right corner followed by a scrum but we defended well and looked to have cleared the danger when a penalty was awarded. We went quickly but over-zealous appealing resulted in a penalty the other way and Ben Hornby took the shot at goal to put Morpeth in-front.

We bounced straight back with a try from skipper Ryan Painter. A penalty kicked to the corner resulted in a maul that got close to the line and Painter darted in from short range. Brother Gavin slotted the conversion and added two further penalties as the visitors started to get on the wrong side of referee Tony Jenkins.

Hooker and captain Carl Hill spent the half time break in deep discussions with Mr Jenkins and an early second half penalty from Hornby cut the deficit to 7 points but immediately from the restart another penalty for appealing went against Hill and this time he was despatched to the sin-bin for 10 minutes. While he was off the field it gave us a much needed breather in the scrum where we had gone backwards all afternoon but the defensive effort continued and it led to our second try. Competition at a breakdown on half way resulted in a loose ball and Gavin Painter broke down the short side before feeding Rob Thorn for a run-in to the line.

Growing in confidence we played our best rugby in setting up the third try, midway through the second half. Crisp passing and powerful ball carrying in our own half made the Morpeth defence work hard and when Liam Checksfield sensed a gap he didn’t need a second invitation and used his pace to race away for a terrific score. He ran round under the posts to give Painter an easier kick but it was charged down.

Checks try Morpeth

Morpeth had to strike back quickly but couldn’t. Despite several chances it wasn’t until two minutes from time Ward got a deserved score with a mazy run. Hornby added a drop goal conversion but even with a late yellow card for Jay Corbett for offside the visitors couldn’t add to their tally and we recorded an unexpected but well deserved win.


West: Austwicke, Thorn, Checksfield, Youll, Hilditch, G Painter, R Painter, Coates, Rollins, Hadwen, Bunter, Linighan, Butcher, Foulds, Turner.
Reps: Wood, Southern, Corbett

Tries: R Painter, Thorn, Checksfield
Cons: G Painter
Pen: G Painter 2
YC: Corbett

Morpeth: Ward, Hornby, Robinson, Phillips, Gavaghan, Hornby, Elliott, Sandall, Hill, Moody, Long, Dawson, Burnham, Williams, Craigs.
Reps: Carmichael, Armstrong, Jackson

Try: Ward
Con: Hornby
Pens: Hornby 2
YC: Hill

Referee: Tony Jenkins [Durham Society]

West 23 Morpeth 13
Official West Hartlepool RFC (IP Logged)
14/01/2018 12:01
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Re: West 23 Morpeth 13
Rozzy 1 (IP Logged)
15/01/2018 16:12
That was a great win and an enjoyable game to watch, for a change.
Great to see such good backs play getting its reward and some top tackling on display.
Hopefully we can kick on from here, but how often will we be able to field such a strong team in a season when unavailability has cost us so dearly?
It's a sign of the times, I suppose and we aren't the only club struggling in this respect.

Re: West 23 Morpeth 13
Hardwick Man (IP Logged)
15/01/2018 18:12
Some passionate vocals in the video

Re: West 23 Morpeth 13
Dave Picken (IP Logged)
15/01/2018 19:34
Carlo Robinson brought along some of the adults he cares for at work. They really enjoyed the day.

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