Emphatic win for young side

Wetherby v Old Rishworthians
Will McDonnell scores
Wetherby v Old Rishworthians Will McDonnell scores

Old Rishworthians continued their winning ways by defeating hosts Wetherby 45-15.

The side showed several changes from the previous week with James Clarke, Liam Phillips, Jacob Ford and Ryan Mudd unavailable.

William McDonnell made his first start for the 1st XV at full back and Jacob Bower joined Thomas Jowle in the back row.

Sam Nunn had recovered from a knock and was one of four under 19s in a team which had an average age of 24. Ed Cockroft returned at scrum half.

Wetherby started well and following a penalty at a scrum, Josh Kelly was yellow carded for a high tackle, and Billy Cale kicked the penalty.

With the large Wetherby pack looking to cause an upset, the Copley men did what they have been coached to do - use the width of the pitch and create space for the wingers.

Good handling by Anthony Nathaniel and Sam Nunn led to the club’s leading try scorer Anthony Shoesmith scoring an unconverted try in the corner.

The visitors settled and Kelly, returned from the sin bin, put in a delightful grubber kick for Sam Nunn to follow up and touch down for a try which was converted by Kelly.

The next try for the visitors was an example of how far the players have come under the coaching of Chris Stone and Tom Andrews.

The ball travelled through eight phases of play and eventually Cockroft scored under the posts and Kelly converted.

After 30 minutes Plant, the Wetherby winger, was yellow carded for a late challenge on Shoesmith.

There was only one team in it now and great handling from Jowle and Nunn enabled McDonnell to mark a fine first match with the bonus point try.

Not to be out done Bower, who was taking the ball in the line out, suddenly broke through a number of Wetherby players and scored a try which was converted by Cockroft. The half time whistle blew and with the score 33-3.

The travelling supporters were looking forward to a feast of rugby but Rishworthians gave away too much ball and could not create chances.

Wetherby scoring a try from Oates, converted by Kale, and the Wetherby pack started to have faith in themselves, but could not break the defence of the Copley men.

Rishworthians looked more themselves when Bower broke through and intelligently drew the full back to pass to the supporting Cockroft, who dived over under the posts. Kelly converted.

Unnecessary kicking, some poor, started to creep into the visitors’ game and after losing possession in midfield home centre Blackwell ghosted through for Wetherby’s second try which was not converted.

Rishworthians’ seventh and final try came from Nick Faulkner after a break by Taniela Bakoso and a scrum near the Wetherby line. The conversion was missed.

The Halifax side have completed half their matches in Yorkshire Two and are second, four points behind Moortown. They have no game next Saturday but then travel to Ripon.