Old Brodleians boosted their hopes of a creditable top six finish in Yorkshire One by completing a double over one of the section’s better sides, Selby, yesterday.
The Woodhead men ended their visitors’ seven-match unbeaten run with a comprehensive six-try 41-15 success on a heavy pitch.
Selby looked favourites when they cut the deficit to 15-19 early in the second half, playing down the Hipperholme slope, but Brods showed admirable fitness and teamwork to ultimately humble their opponents.
On a bright and breezy afternoon, John Cole’s home side got their tactics right, kicking deep through Liam Scott and Dan Wood and then hunting the mistake.
There were plenty of those from a ponderous Selby back three and Brods charged 14-0 up in 18 minutes.
Wood missed a 35 metre penalty on three minutes but the visitors’ fragile defence was exposed from a poor restart, Tongan prop Loma Kivalu bumping off one tackler and sending in centre Nathan Scott for a try converted by Wood.
Liam Scott’s kick and chase put Brods back on the attack and Selby conceded a five metre scrum but escaped when referee Brian Mulligan blew up for a crooked feed.
However, Selby shot themselves in the foot when they lost possession 40 metres out and Brods winger Kristian Sharples hacked on and regathered the ball close to the line for a converted try.
James Ogden, Rob Jennings, Sam Deacon and Matt Hoyle combined in a nice Brods move down the left and Liam Scott kicked to the corner but over-eager Brods were offside and a string of penalties helped Selby ease the pressure.
The visitors got to the home 22 for the first time on 29 minutes and fullback Josh Cruise rewarded them with a penalty.
Visibly encouraged, Selby made a couple of breaks on their left and cut the deficit to 14-8 on 36 minutes when winger Ben Lunt touched down for an unconverted score wide on the right.
Brods were quick to respond, skipper Kyle Millward sending flanker Ryan Harris over in the corner for a 19-8 interval scoreline.
A pass which was ruled forward halted a threatening Selby raid but visiting No 8 Martin Protheroe swatted off three tacklers in a bullocking 40 metre run to the posts and Cruise’s conversion put the visitors within striking distance.
That was as near as they got, however, as Brods again buckled down rather than under.
Wood kicked an easy penalty for offside following a driving maul and Kiwi centre Deacon gave Protheroe a taste of his own medicine, knocking the giant forward out of the way during another promising Brods move.
Selby twice dropped the ball while making ground wide on the right as both sides continued to mass their defences in the middle of the field.
However, the visitors’ threat petered out and Brods really got the bit between their teeth in the final quarter.
Home No 8 Rob Jennings took advantage of a seemingly nonexistent Selby back row to charge away from the base of a scrum and lock Callum Thompson showed an impressive turn of foot to make the final 30 metres to the try line from Sharples’ inside pass on the right.
Brods’ 27-15 lead didn’t look so secure when Deacon was yellow carded on 65 minutes but it made not a scrap of difference.
Jennings put Brods back on the attack and Kivalu handed off fullback Cruise on his way to scoring at the side of the posts, Wood converting.
Following Deacon’s return, there was a touch of showmanship as confident Brods added the coup de grace with four minutes left.
Kivalu and Wood shredded the Selby defence and replacement hooker James Brown could had strolled over wide on the right.
Instead, he waited for Josh Allen to support him and passed inside a covering defender for the scrum half to go in by the posts, Wood adding the extra two points.