Heath dig deep to secure Shield success

James Watson scores for Heath against Roundhegians
James Watson scores for Heath against Roundhegians

Roundhegians 23 Heath 35

Heath duly booked their place in the next round of the Yorkshire Shield after seeing off the threat from Yorkshire Two side Roundhegians.

Several influential players were missing due to injury, but this provided a good opportunity to blood some of the players coming through the junior ranks.

From the kick off Heath charged the attempted clearance down and were quickly on the attack. Several good runs from Richardson, Watson and Moore set up a youthful-looking back row but the home side managed to hold out.

After a period of sustained pressure Heath gave away a penalty but the kick was way off target However, this was short-lived and some woeful defensive cover allowed scrum half Woolaston to open the home side’s account and, with a very easy conversion, Heath were up against it at 7-0 down after 11 minutes.

Pressure from Roundhegians continued but Hinchcliffe cleared the lines with a great kick. Heath backed up and when Pollard broke clear Hinchcliffe was in support and he went over for a try which he also converted to level the scores at 7-7.

Back came Roundhegians and when Heath’s prop, Chris Moore, held onto the ball too long the referee a penalty in front of the posts for the home side to take the lead at 10 -7 after 21 minutes.

First team debutant, Kris Garland, was having a sound game at hooker, taking the place of the injured Puttick, and from good lineout ball Dominic Walsh was released to go 50 metres before Roundhegians gave away a penalty.

Heath chose to find touch and from the lineout Hunter won the ball and a try resulted from sterling work from Watson, Cook and Richardson. A superb conversion put Heath in front at 10-14 after 27 minutes.

Two minutes later ill-discipline from Heath presented the home side with a penalty which they converted to trail 13-14.

A clever kick from Lomas for Brown to pick up set new centre Ewan Miller off on a run, but the move broke down. Heath maintained the pressure and after a powerful run Lomas got away and then found Moore who went over for Heath’s third try on 34 minutes. Another superb conversion from Hinchcliffe gave them a 13-21 half-time lead.

Heath were quickly on the attack after the break and it came as no surprise when Ewan Miller easily evaded several tackles to go over in the corner. Hinchcliffe obliged once again and Heath were well in control at 13-28.

However, Roundhegians were not done and on 53 minutes a storming run from centre Trutch saw them bring the score back to 20-28. Heath needed to respond and went back on the attack with Wilby going off to allow Olly Collinge on.

On 59 minutes, a Roundhegians penalty pulled the score back to 23-28 after which Miller was injured and Tom Collinge came on.

The home side were desperately looking for another score and a mix-up between Walsh and Collinge, plus some silly passes, nearly let Roundhegians in.

It was all a bit frantic as Heath clung on, but old heads steadied things and gradually Heath clawed their way back into the game.

From a lineout, Cook intercepted the ball and stormed 30 metres for try which Hinchcliffe converted to complete the scoring.