HORNSEA 1st XV 23 pts OLD
OTLIENSIANS 1st XV 17 pts
Photo Jenny Trelfa
Otliensians left Hornsea on Saturday still
trying to come to terms with how they had lost these two league points,
after a stirring fightback that on another day would have seen them
The game could best be described as "Three mistakes and a disallowed
try.......or three", with the mistakes leading to an early 17 - 3 deficit,
and the disallowed tries not leading to the deserved victory.
Hornsea now possess some of the fastest players in League 4, and they tried
to utilise this strength early on with sweeping moves, only to be thwarted
by good Ensians defence. They also like to run quick tap penalties and from
one of these the first Ensians mistake occured, leading to the Hornsea left
wing strolling in unopposed. Ensians came back through their driving game
and were rewarded with a well struck penalty by Foster, but virtually from
the restart the second mistake, a routine missed one on one tackle allowed
the Hornsea hooker to scamper in, again unopposed, from fully 30 metres. The
third mistake followed a fine Ensians move that went from 22 to 22, through
numerous pairs of hands only for the final pass to be dropped 15 metres from
the Hornsea line, the wing gleefully scooping up the ball and racing the
length of the field, before putting his centre in under the posts.
At 17 - 3 down many teams would have folded, but Ensians began to play their
dynamic rucking game, and for the rest of the match battered Hornsea in to a
virtual standstill. The away support thought the fightback had begun when
skipper Smith rounded off an excellent series of forward and back drives to
crash over, the referee ruled otherwise. Next Arbuckle joined the fray,
crashing over, no luck, the referee again ruling a scrum for been held up.
Third time lucky when Bonner went in close to the uprights, this time the
referee signalled the try and with Foster converting, Ensians went in at
half time trailing 17 - 10.
At the beginning of the second half Hornsea converted two long range
penalties, and then began a series of incidents that conspired to leave the
Ensians with that "If Only" feeling. The players making their seasonal
debuts, Kear and Allman were leading from the front, driving ferosiously in
to the Hornsea team, and from one such drive, Kear scored a deserved try,
Foster converting to close the gap to 23 -17.
For the last 15 minutes Hornsea gave away a stream of penalties as they
desperately hung on, being submitted to unrelenting pressure, and the
Ensians support could not understand the lack of yellow cards for the
persistant offences. As time ebbed away the crucial series of plays unfolded
five metres out from the Hornsea line, with the home team conceding another
four consecutive penalties, two of which were for deliberate knock ons,
still no yellow cards, still no penalty try. From the fifth, Birch tapped
quickly to feed Smith who scored the try only 10 metres to the left of the
posts, but no, unlike the first half the referee called the Ensians back for
the penalty to be re taken, and the script was complete.
The relief of the Hornsea players at the end was palpable, the display of
the Ensians warranting more than a narrow away defeat.
Ripon 3rd XV 24 pts V Old Otliensians 2nd
XV 7 pts
Facing a big pack Otliensians were always
struggling to deliver tidy ball from the set scrum but Ben Smith at the
front and Joe Robinson in the middle of the linout won a good amount of
clean possession. The first half was evenly balanced with the visitors
orchestrating some promising moves but without final penetration and
defending their line well from Ripon attacks. The only score was a penalty
goal fron Ripon.
In the second half a further penalty put Ripon
further ahead and they continued to use the policy of rolling substitutes
which had not been agreed and transgresses one on the Laws of the game. This
meant Ensians had to deal with fresh legs in a pack they could reasonably
have expected to tire.
Ripon scored in the corner after 11 mins but
then a fine break from centre Rob Gray set up a try for Darren Cooley which
Ben Newall did well to convert from wide out. Ripon increased their lead
with a futher penalty on 30 mins but the Ensians were still very much in the
game although they were trying too hard attacking from positions around
their own 25m.
in the last 10 mins a dropped pass led to a
forward drive and a converted try from the home side and a similar incident
saw Ripon score again from a kick and chase giving them a rather flattering
For the Ensians , Sean Kennedy had a good game
at inside centre.