West 42 Northern 8

By El Pedro - April 8 2018
West 42 Northern 8 An excellent second half display resulted in an emphatic win over fellow strugglers Northern, keeping alive our faint hopes of avoiding relegation.

The 5-point win moves us off the bottom of North One East, now only 2 points from safety and Huddersfield YMCA in 11th place. We go to YMCA in two weeks time but next week they face off against today’s opponents Northern so without some help from others we will probably need to win both remaining games.

It is certainly likely to come down to the final game of the season and possibly beyond as Percy Park travel to Bradford & Bingley a week after everyone else finishes. With the unusual situation of the bottom six teams being so close together the permutations are many but winning our last two games seems like the most straightforward route to remaining in North One for next season.

The win over Northern showed what we can do with our best XV on the field but all too often this season that hasn’t been the case and performances away from Brinkburn have been well short of the standard set at home.

On a wet afternoon both sets of players had to deal with some tough conditions for handling. It was Northern who started by far the better of the sides and probably had their best spell of the match in the opening 15 minutes.

Checksfield Trry Northern 550

Despite their dominance they trailed on the scoreboard after 8 minutes when Liam Checksfield scored with our first attack. A slightly fortuitous deflection off Peter Youll resulted in Zac Southern’s pass on half way wrong-footing the defence and a nice inside pass put Checksfield through a gap to race away and score under the posts.

Northern did pull a try back through a rolling maul in the right corner and then took the lead with a penalty from scrum-half Ali Gray at the end of a series of penalties awarded to the visitors. Despite being behind our forwards were well on top in the scrum and at the rolling maul and three successive kicks to touch saw mauls brought down and referee Carl Hall despatched Ben Smallwood to the sin-bin.

Zac Try Northern

On the stroke of half-time we made our pressure tell and retook the lead with Southern running a loop and Gavin Painter putting the fly-half away for a nicely worked try. Painter converted for a 14-8 half-time lead.

Barker Try Northern 550

The second half was very much one-way traffic as our forward dominance began to tell. Our third try came on 48 minutes with Alex Barker the beneficiary of another powerful scrum close to the line resulting in a looping pass the flanker was grateful to tidy up. A fine conversion from Painter stretched the lead further before a fine solo try from Rob Thorn on 55 minutes.Fielding a clearance kick on half way the winger burst through 3 tackles on his way to the line, securing the all-important bonus point in the process.  A confrontation in the 22 after the try was scored resulted in Painter being yellow-carded but Southern stepped up to stroke the touchline conversion through the posts.

Northern winger Dan Matthews followed Painter to the sin-bin five minutes later after Checksfield tackled him into the advertising boards on half-way and he lashed out in retaliation. The reaction of his own team mates seemed to suggest he was lucky to only depart for 10 minutes rather than the rest of the game.

 Hilditch Try Northern 550

With the pressure of the result drifting away we began playing with more confidence and two tries in the closing minutes put a nice gloss on the score. Will Hilditch was first to go over, powering across the line after it looked like he would be stopped well short and then Checksfield kept up his charge for retaining the team’s top try scorer prize with his second of the game after a well worked backs move. Painter converted both tries, again from wide on the left, to complete a fine afternoon with the boot.

 

West: Hilditch, Checksfield, Youll, G Painter, Thorn, Southern, Siddle, Key, Brown, Rollins, Linighan, Bunter, Barker, Butcher, Turner.
Reps: Coates, Atkins, Peacock

Tries: Checksfield 2, Southern, Barker, Thorn, Hilditch
Cons: Painter 6, Southern
YC: Painter

Northern: Woodhead, Matthews, H Clark, Smallwood, Malley, A Clark,Gray, Troke, Mullick, Wilson, Douglas, White, Kay, Ure, Millington.
Reps: Connor, Lawson, Henderson

Referee: Carl Hall [Durham Society]

 
West 42 Northern 8
Official West Hartlepool RFC (IP Logged)
08/04/2018 14:49
What do you think? You can have your say by posting below.
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Re: West 42 Northern 8
LesterP (IP Logged)
08/04/2018 17:33
Great photos from yesterday's game - well done Kathryn - esp in such poor conditions 😉

 
Re: West 42 Northern 8
Hardwick Man (IP Logged)
09/04/2018 16:26
To say the atmosphere was positive from the players and in the club in general Late Saturday would be an understatement ....cmon lads nearly there. Dig deep

 
Re: West 42 Northern 8
Kathryn 😊 (IP Logged)
09/04/2018 17:41
Thanks Les yes it was a bit damp - was nice to have a happy side to photo

 
Re: West 42 Northern 8
Dave Picken (IP Logged)
10/04/2018 10:01
Many thanks to both Kathryn and El Pedro for some excellent coverage this season.

 
Re: West 42 Northern 8
LesterP (IP Logged)
10/04/2018 11:25
Yes - "Hear Hear" - well said DP.

 
Re: West 42 Northern 8
Dave Picken (IP Logged)
11/04/2018 10:32
Video now added.

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