OLD OTLIENSIANS 42 LEEDS CORINTHIANS 10
On another stormy November Saturday afternoon
at Chaffers Field, the Otliensians conundrum may finally be unravelling,
with the first sustained performance of the season, which whilst not quite
perfect, showed enough of the undoubted skills of the team to fully merit
this 7 try demolition, of a game and committed Corinthians side.
The game started with Kristian Keinhorst once again controlling the game
suberbly from stand off, using the elements to considerable advantage,
driving Corinthians back with searching touch finders, from one such, a line
out ball was stolen, great hands swept the ball between the whole team, for
Arbuckle to draw the last man to put winger Jon Woods over on the right.
Birch was also controlling the ball well with the boot, and from a delicate
chip through, Kristian Keinhorst won the race for the touchdown, for Foster
to add the conversion in very difficult conditions.
The patterns of play continued, with several forward surges being repelled
by a strong Corinthians defence, but gaps were beginning to appear, and
flanker Duggan was released on the blindside to dive in at the right corner.
The supporters were wondering, could this be the day that all the promise
was fulfilled? They were not disappointed, as one of the success stories of
the season Tom O'Donnell took the ball on the Corinthians 22 and rampaged
through 4 defenders to score his first ever try for the first XV.
At 22 - 0 approaching half time, Corinthians again upped their work rate,
with their right wing forcing his way over after sustained pressure and
phase play, a just reward for their never say die attitude.
Ensians began the second half as they had the first, dominating possession,
particularly at the contact area, and driving the Corinthians scrum back at
a rate of knots, Foster landed an excellent penalty into the wind, and after
Arbuckle picked up from the base of another driving scrum to score the fifth
try, the Ensians conundrum was beginning to look a little less predictable.
With the scrum so dominant due to the outstanding work of Lyon, Bonner and
Cook, and the contact area secured by Hanogue, Tom Woods and the back row,
this performance was completed with two more excellent tries, the first an
exquisite blindside move, executed by Birch and Keinhorst, with Jon Woods
outpacing the defence for his second try. From the kick off strong work from
Smith, linking with Ratahi and Lee O'Donnell, then back in to the forwards
left Duggan to surge 30 metres to the line, for Foster to again convert.
Through all this Corinthians had maintained an admirable determination and
with the last play of the game scored a try wide out on the right, but there
was no denying the Ensians on this day, performing for the whole of the game
to a standard that was appreciated by the rain soaked crowd, who await
Bramley next week for further evidence that the conundrum may be finally
been laid to rest.
John Woods scores
Otliensians 2nd XV 64 pts v Wharfedale XV
The Dalesmen arrived with a weak side and
borrowed Ben Newall to play on the wing. Otliensians kicked off into the
crosswind and a good handling move gave left wing Jason Babb a scoring
chance after 3 mins. Both sides tried with some success to handle the ball
in the poor weather but Ensians soon added another try from John Smith after
a sparkling move, stand off Phil Purnell converting. Ensians pack were
playing constructive rugby and were well on top in the tight. On 16 mins
scrum half Andy Causer broke from a scrum 40m out and scampered over to
score, Purnell again adding the points.
With skipper Andy Bower urging his men on , the home side were just to quick
for Wharfedale but the visitors began to string together some passages of
play and tested the home side defence. Late in the half , Brett Tenniswood
sparked off a move; the ball went to Purnell who fed right wing Richard Cuff
who broke through several tackles to score despite damaged ribs. Purnell
converted to give Ensians a 26 - pts lead at the break.
Wharfedale were by no means finished and directly after halftime probed deep
into the Ensians half scoring a converted try. Both teams were guilty of
trying to handle poor ball in their own 22m and the visitors paid the
penalty when Bower tapped through a dropped pass to force his way over and
score, Purnell again converting. By now the Ensians pack were dominant in
the loose and a Cuff soon scored his second try with another forceful run,
Purnell adding the points. Immediately after, Ben Smith broke from halfway
and scored with a determined run wide on the left and this was followed by a
good break by his brother John whose well timed pass led to no 8 Matt Taylor
scoring, Tom Twist converting. A break by Bower then put John Smith in to
score Twist again converting with a neat drop kick. Finally Cuff
rounded off the afternoon with a hat trick. Things will no doubt be
different when Ensians visit Wharfedale in February.
Harrogate Pirates 45 pts v Otliensians 3rd
XV 0 pts
Visiting old friends the Pirates, Otliensians
borrowed a player to even the sides up. In the early stages the visitors won
good ball from the tight and Alan Garnett took clean ball at no 2 in the
lineout. This enabled Otliensians to set up some good attacking positions
but they were just not able to score. With the home side losing a front row
player and with no other front row available the scrums were uncontested
from late in the first half. Harrogate's experience gradually began to tell
and they scored three tries , two of which were converted to give them a 19
- 0 pts lead at halftime.
Just before the break Ensians lost prop Chris Myers injured and at the break
the sides were reorganised to give a 12 a side game.
In the second half Harrogate soon rattled up four further tries and after 20
mins with further injuries and in deteriorating weather conditions with the
players well and truly soaked, the game was abandoned.
For the Ensians John Offer in his first game for the Club had a storming
game at hooker and John Broadbent had another good game in the back row.
Will Haines captained the side from stand off and held the side together
On Saturday the 1st XV play Bramley Phoenix at home in the League whilst
the 2nd XV are at Bramley in a Merit Table game. The 3rd XV are also
scheduled at home to Moortown 3rd XV.