West 12 Alnwick 48

By El Pedro - March 11 2018
West 12 Alnwick 48 A sorry afternoon saw us suffer our heaviest home defeat of the season in a game we had to win to avoid slipping into the bottom three.

With fellow strugglers Dinnington and Northern playing each other we started the game knowing a win was a must if we wanted to end the day above the relegation zone. As it was we put in one of our poorest home displays of the season, just about sticking with Alnwick in the first half but getting blown away in the second.

To make matters worse we suffered a number of injuries, the most notable being skipper Ryan Painter who went down in severe pain late in the second half and after the game the injury was confirmed as a broken leg. He’d already been lining up at centre after brother Gavin limped off in the second half and as a result we finished the game with a heavily rearranged backline.

Lots of overnight rain left the going heavy and a late change in the West starting line-up saw Matt Siddle come in on the wing for Rob Thorn.

We started the game with a decent spell of possession although it was all inside our own half and when Alnwick did get on the attack they looked more threatening. However a yellow card for full back Jack Smales brought the attack to an end and we cleared the danger.

With a man advantage we were determined to get on the scoreboard and Adam Coates eventually crashed over after a long spell of pressure in the 22 with Gavin Painter converting.

The lead didn’t seem to do us much good though and our early tactics of retaining possession went out of the window in favour of some loose kicking. Scrum half Peter Moralee pulled a try back for the visitors when he spotted a gap at the side of a ruck and darted in from 20 metres.

Somehow we held on to our lead until the 32nd minute when Zac Southern’s chip and chase fell into a crowd of offside players and a quick tap from Moralee sent Callum Burn in for an easy score. James Warcup converted for a 12-7 lead.

With the scoreline still tight at the interval we could take encouragement from the fact we had been far from our best but had still stuck with the promotion contenders on the scoreboard. That encouragement wouldn’t last much longer than 5 minutes into the second half when a long range penalty from Painter drifted wide.

From that point on it was one-way traffic with our defence unable to cope with the simple combination of accurate passing and pace from the Alnwick back division. They ran in three more tries in 18 minutes to secure the bonus point before Alex Key pulled one back – just reward for following up what looked like a lost cause only for the ball to fall loose and the prop gratefully touch down.

Hopes of a late revival were short lived as another three tries in the final 5 minutes killed off any hopes of even a losing or four try bonus of our own. Callum Burn completed his hat-trick and Moralee got his second with a break from a scrum on half way which pretty much summed up our afternoon – not a single defender touched him all the way to the line.

It will now be an uphill struggle to climb back out of the relegation zone. It’s still tight in terms of points but we will need to find two or three wins out of the remaining five games and only one of those is at Brinkburn.


West: Zac Southern, Matt Tyers, Will Hilditch, Peter Youll, Matt Siddle, Gavin Painter, Ryan Painter (captain), Adam Coates,  Andrew Rollins, Alex Key, John Bunter, Joe Rafferty, Alex Barker, Scott Butcher, Andrew Turner .

Tries: Coates, Key
Con: G Painter

Alnwick: Jack Smales, Johnny Burn, Callum Burn, Frank Hutchinson, Scott Atkinson, James Warcup, Peter Moralee, Duncan Smith, Lance Green, Colin Phillipps, Johnny Young, Matty Gray, Ben Courty, James Hamilton, Ben Gothorp.
Reps: Danny Clayton, Ali Blackett, Rob Cuthbert

West 12 Alnwick 48
Official West Hartlepool RFC (IP Logged)
11/03/2018 15:06
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Re: West 12 Alnwick 48
LesterP (IP Logged)
12/03/2018 16:37
Well, it is what it is and we are where we are !

Never mind - Clecky on Saturday, back to winning ways hopefully .... and a few flagons of Tetleys BB to celebrate.

Stand fast lads - No surrender !

Re: West 12 Alnwick 48
Dave Picken (IP Logged)
13/03/2018 07:48
Just moving this back to the top

Re: West 12 Alnwick 48
Kathryn 😊 (IP Logged)
15/03/2018 07:07

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