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Northallerton 17 - OORUFC 8

 

OORUFC 2ndXV 40 pts vs Cleckheaton 3rdXV 19 pts

 Cleckheaton-216

Pictures here!

For their first Yorkshire 3 Merit Table game of the season, ‘Ensians took the field in warm sunshine and a stiff breeze facing up to opponents with a big pack. They welcomed back former 1st XV hooker James Kear, who had been working away for two years, and he formed a formidable front row alongside Dave Beardsley and skipper Chris Myers. Against the wind, the early exchanges favoured the home side with half backs Ben Newall and Matt Tenniswood distributing the ball well, allowing centres Andy Hayward and Dominic Oddy to make inroads into the visitors’ territory. As Cleckheaton settled down it was clear they had one or two lively backs and the pack put together some telling rolling mauls.

The home side let one or two chances slip through untidy handling, but, on 21 minutes, a loose ball was snapped up in midfield by the Cleckheaton centre and good backing up produced a try under the posts which was converted. ‘Ensians came back strongly and with a steady supply of ball through Alan Garnett in the lineout, they were soon back in attack. After good work by flankers Mark Fox and Steve Lofthouse, lively lock Andy Wood made good ground up the short side and slipped the ball to winger Darren Cooley who went over in the corner. Although the conversion failed, ‘Ensians now had their tails up and when Andy Hayward cut back inside and raced up the middle, Cooley was on hand again to score under the posts. The conversion by Tenniswood took the score to 12 – 7..

Cleckheaton were still very much in the game and occasional periods of attack posed threats, but the back three of Liam Copping, Sean Flesher and Cooley were up to the task. For ‘Ensians, centre Hayward was now becoming a real menace and he sliced through to set up Ben Newall under the posts to lift the lead to 19 – 7 as half time approached. Richard Paley replaced Lofthouse after the break, but the home defence was caught napping as the visitors swiftly moved the ball along the backs to put their winger over in the corner. After a powerful drive by locks Wood and Scott Child, it was Hayward once more who burst through to offload to Tenniswood near the posts. Three minutes later, good handling between Fox, Oddy and Tenniswood allowed young winger Liam Copping to score half way out. With two good conversions by Tenniswood, the score was now a more comfortable 33 – 12 after 49 minutes.

As Ray Drake replaced veteran prop Dave Beardsley, the home side continued to dominate and there was some excellent interplay between forwards and backs to put Cooley away for his hat-trick. With the score at 40 – 12, Cleckheaton finally started to put some threatening moves together to score a good converted try which took the score to 40 – 19 on 69 minutes. Darryl Hamilton came on to replace the injured Hayward and produced some strong runs in support of Oddy and Tenniswood. Both sides continued to play attacking rugby for the last ten minutes, but, overall, the enterprising display by ‘Ensians saw them through to an entertaining and well-earned victory.




FOOTNOTE – GEOFFREY STORR

Players and spectators paid a silent tribute on Saturday as a mark of respect for Club stalwart Geoff Storr who passed away on the 5th September. Geoff, a former partner in the local firm of accountants Hollings Crowe Storr & Co. had been associated with ‘Ensians firstly as a player and then as a dedicated volunteer over the past sixty years. Although suffering from ill-health for the past two years, he was still a regular at the Club and he will be sadly missed by all Club members as well as by the wider community.

 

 

 

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