Rugby round-up: Brods win at Morley but Rishies and Crocs are defeated

Despite numerous changes to the playing squad, Old Brods won 32-14 at Morley.

Monday, 20th December 2021, 9:10 am
Updated Monday, 20th December 2021, 9:12 am
Skipper Callum Heseltine tries to break the gloom for Rishworthians. Photo: Jonny Tomes-Green

Brods travelled to Scatcherd Lane in confident mood, despite regular scrum half jimmy Hodkinson and his recent replacement Phil Town both ruled out. Ben Hoyle stepped in at half-back and he enjoyed his afternoon with a superb performance .

The changes resulted in a first team debut for 19 year old Felix Lorimer at wing forward who impressed the Brods supporters with his industry and commitment. In the backs Michael Tuke made his league debut on the wing and showed that he has the ability to be a regular at this level.

Brods young front row of Peter Ashton, Cole Wilson and Elliot Craven did indeed stand up to their bigger and more experienced opposition to lay the foundation for one of the Hipperholme boys best performances of the season.

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Morley v Old Brods. Cole Wilson. Photo: Robin Sugden

The match kicked off in gathering gloom which was not to improve throughout the afternoon and even with the assistance of floodlights it was difficult to see what was happening on the opposite side of the pitch.

Brods controlled the early exchanges to work their way into Morley territory. After seven minutes play the Woodhead boys opened the scoring with some close quarter support play and it was Rob Jennings who finished the play touching down under the posts with try converted by Christian Georgiou - a confidence boosting start for the Woodhead boys.

Morley responded positively taking the game to their visitors however Brods aggressive defence turned the ball over and the ball was run out of the 22 to relieve the pressure. Brods continued to dominate play and their second try came on the 15th minute when a well taken penalty put the Brods in the left hand corner. The lineout was won and the visiting eight set about their task to drive the larger morley pack back fully 15 metres and it was Cole Wilson who touched down to emerge from the mist with the ball in hand . A second conversion by Georgiou put the visitors 14 points ahead.

Morley once more responded well to play in Brods territory and it was only outstanding work by Michael Briggs and Danny Chappel in defence which kept the home team at bay.

Morley v Old Brods. Rob Jennings winning a line-out. Photo: Robin Sugden

Eventually the pressure told and following a good line out win the ball was moved slickly along the backs and Morley were on the score board with a fine try and conversion.

Brods hit back immediately when another well placed penalty kick to the corner produced a line out and drive from the well drilled Brods pack and a second try for Rob Jennings.

With a missed conversion Brods held a 19-7 lead with half time approaching and had to defend their line as Morley repeatedly strove to break the defence.

The second half opened with Morley once more camped inside Brods territory however Brods defence was robustly sound frustrating the home sides efforts and resulting in consecutive penalties awarded to the visitors for the home sides indiscipline.

This continued when a fracas irrupted in front of the main stand resulting in a penalty to Brods, a yellow card for Chris Georgiou and a red to the Morley wing. The penalty kick put Brods in the corner 10 metres from the home line and another well constructed driving maul resulted in Elliot Craven scoring his try to extend the score line to 24-7.

Brods once more took the game to their hosts and a cross kick to the right wing was gathered by Michael Tuke who had a clear run to the line to score a try on his debut 29-7.

Morley had the last word in the fourth minute of injury time when they were awarded a penalty try however Brods returned to the clubhouse in good spirits with another away win and a further bonus point in the bag.

Rishworthians started their 22-13 defeat at Bradford Salem in fine style and ran up a 10-point lead, but that was where it stopped.

The pitch was shrouded in mist and so was the Rishworthian performance.

They made it to half-time with a 13-3 lead, even allowing for a yellow card for No 8 Simanu Tusiga just before the break.

They lasted until he resumed, but hardly had he returned to the pitch, than he received a second yellow, making a red, and Rishworthians were down to 14 men for the rest of the match – and that difference told.

The match started with the visitors pinning the hosts down in their own half until Josh Kelly put them ahead with a penalty.

Salem finally got into the Rishworthian half, but centre Andrew Esmond broke out with a strong run and suddenly the visitors found themselves near the home line.

They set up a series of drives and then sent the ball down the line with fullback Joe Billing coming in to put young wing Lewis Taylor in at the corner for his first try for the club. Kelly added the points with a fine conversion.

From then however Rishworthians game went downhill. They gave away too many penalties and kicked away too much possession, of which there was little, particularly in the second half.

Kelly traded penalties with Salem’s Callum Smith until the break and even when Tusiga went off for the first time, the visitors’ seven-man pack pushed Salem back in the scrums.

But once he went off permanently in the second half, Salem took advantage and a forward drive brought a converted try to give them a four-point lead.

As the fog deepened Rishworthians struggled to gain possession, despite brilliant work from the two remaining back row players Gregg Withers and Ethan Pollard.

With the ball in their hands, the backs always looked threatening, but they did not have it enough, and too many penalties added to their woes.

As the darkness and mist deepened even further Salem broke away to score an unconverted try in the corner to seal the victory.

Rishworthians’ Development team put in a fine performance, but went down 15-0 to a very strong Vandals side at Warley.

Ill-discipline on the road cost Old Crossleyans as they lost 25-15 at Beverley.

Beverley fielded a team that showed power and good balance defying their current league position of ninth and proved an insurmountable challenge for the current league leaders.

The game, particularly the first half, was marked by Crocs indiscipline, conceding 11 penalties and one yellow card.

The officiating at times was hard to read and random but Beverley were well worthy contenders and eventually broke a depleted defence line when their dangerous full back, Luke Hazell, crashed over in the corner, despite several Crocs defenders scratching their heads for what appeared to have involved a ‘crossing’ infringement.

The Crocs though soon hit back and following a series of strong flowing rucks, off much improved line out ball, found themselves under the Beverley posts, who showed indiscipline at the breakdown giving Joe Gallagher an opportunity for three points.

This was the final play of the half with the home team leading 5-3.

The second half started with further Crocs indiscipline when George Ackroyd was adjudged to have made a failed interception gifting the away team a penalty and earning the Crocs winger a yellow card, Beverley added the three points.

Beverley then struck from deep preying on loose defending in midfield allowing their backs to run clean through linking up with their pacey centre Rob Smith to finish a well-executed try under the Crocs posts, taking the score to 15-3.

Beverley who was now taking full advantage of the extra man were looking more clinical and threatening in attack and it wasn’t long before they found space out wide and despite last

ditch defending drove over to score another converted try, taking the score to 22-3.

The game was now ebbing away for the crocs and the focus now shifted to a bonus point against an opposition clearly more enthused and determined.

It was the Crocs though who then found momentum following dangerous runs from Josh Hunt, Matty Beswick and Callum Dunne, this coupled with improved discipline their eventual breakthrough finally came when James Cooper's drove over from short-range following a quick ruck, taking the score to 22-8.

Beverley soon hit back though with a penalty taking the score to 25-8.

The Crocs again found momentum but yet further indiscipline struck, Liam Buffet sited for a high tackle leading to a red card. This took the penalty count to 23 against the Crocs.

The Crocs were now truly up against it but showed great character and following strong runs by Joe Bucklle and Ruben Pollard, Billy Hammond eventually found the try line for the final score, Joe Gallagher managed to convert taking the final score to 25-15 earning the Crocs a hard-fought bonus point.