Latest League match report
20/04/19 Tigers -
13/04/19 Tigers 1st XV 34 - 37 Hinckley
06/04/19 Tigers 1st XV 53 - 19 Peterborough Lions
On a sunny and dry Saturday afternoon Tigers were up against a Lions side who, although relegated, had defeated us when we visited and had been unfortunate in losing a number of games by very small margins. They came to play rugby and had a fine day for it.
From the start they attacked the Tigers line but had trouble handling the ball and were squandering good chances to build scoring opportunities. The home side, however, did not need asking twice so when Jamie Broadley was tackled on the visitors’ 22 he quickly got to his feet, picked up the ball and crossed in the corner for the first try. Mark Ireland set up the kick but it slid just outside the right-hand post. Clearly the wind, which no one could really feel, was stronger once you got above ground level. Just 4 minutes later Greg Mellor, who had an impressive game, made a scything run that cut through the opposition breaking 3 tackles. As they closed him down, he found the marauding Henri Packard on the outside and fed the ball for him to cross the line in the corner. The wind was clearly playing havoc with Ireland’s kicking as the kick again drifted just to the right of the post with an audible groan from the spectators. 10 - 0 after 11 minutes and a pack that was beginning to dominate the set pieces and pushing the visitors back at every scrum. All credit to Lions because they stayed down and square which meant the dominance was not resulting in penalties. A leg injury saw Tom Coates being helped from the pitch and replaced by Sam Johnson. It was Tigers turn to defend and a clearance by Ireland was gathered by Packard on his own 10m line. He set off on a run for the line and, as the marauding Lions began to close him down, he found the hard-working Lewis Bloor on his inside. The pass was perfectly timed and allowed both players to continue towards the line. As they got into the visitors 22 Bloor fed the ball back to Packard who crossed in the corner. This time Ireland made the adjustment and the ball passed to the left of the post. Unfortunately, it was the left-hand post so the score remained at 15 – 0. The Lions were not going to lie down and their scrum half, Franco Perticaro, was trying his best to spur his side on with darting runs as well as seeing his backs continue to squander chances. A penalty from a line out gave Lions the chance to move upfield and from a 5m line out they set up a rolling maul and crossed the line for the hooker, Jack Lewis, to touch down. The conversion by fly half Nico Defeo went straight and true and suddenly the visitors were back in the game at 15 -7. They pressured but the Tigers defence was solid and a good break by Tom Hart found Packard with him but this time on the right wing. Once he had the ball he was away again and touched down for his hat trick of tries and the bonus point that made sure, regardless of other results, that Tigers were in National 2 next year. We won’t mention the kick but as half time approached Tigers were ahead 20 -7. The visitors, however, were not prepared to roll over and from an impressive kick off – high, hanging and just over the 10m line – they attacked with an inside pass that allowed their hard-working No.7, Jack Askham, to cross the line. The extras were duly added and at half time it was 20 -14 and everything to play for.
The second half started badly for the home side as they were penalised from the restart and found themselves defending the ubiquitous rolling maul. They did this effectively but Lions were still attacking as they realised that one more try could put them ahead. Tigers began to drop off a few tackles allowing the opposition to feel they were in with a chance of scoring. Their chance was only fleeting as Tigers one again tightened up and knuckled down to the hard work. Tigers now began to move upfield and, from a scrum on the half way line, Lions eventually gave away a penalty as they went backward at a rate of knots. The line outs were now working well and as Tigers put on the pressure you could see that Lions were beginning to feel it would be a long afternoon. The inevitable happened as the Tigers backs ran the ball and found Packard’s safe hands. He made a great break accompanied by the hard running Chris Pond who was fed the ball as the defence came across to cover. Showing both speed and power Pond crossed the line under the posts. To the cheers of the crowd Ireland converted and began to push the home side into a more comfortable lead at 27 -14. It was now in danger of becoming one-way traffic and as, from the restart, Broadley gathered the ball on his own 10m line he set off on a wrecking ball of a run beating – or knocking down – 5 players before he crossed the line and touched down under the posts. To cheers Ireland again converted and at 34 -14 the game looked to be in the bag. Hard working and tackling Kain Rix was replaced by Matt Adcock making his first league appearance in the first team after an injury ravaged season. Looking fit and strong he looks a welcome addition back into the team. Mellor was having an outstanding game at full back as he made some powerful runs and was proving difficult to stop as were the Tigers forwards. From a 5m lineout Tigers set up the rolling maul but were held up over the line. From the resulting scrum they again moved the Lions pack back at a rate of knots. As it went down just short of the line the referee had no hesitation in signalling a penalty try and another 7 points making it 41-14. Tigers forwards and backs were now enjoying themseved as Pond made another powerful run before being brought down on the 10m line. The forwards were dominant as Bloor was replaced by Anthony Symcox who was looking to last a little longer than he did in his previous excursion into the first team. From broken play near the opposition line Ashley Holland got his reward for some powerful runs and tackling as he got the ball in his hands and crossed the line. Ireland was back to his imperious best as he stroked the ball towards the post. Unfortunately, it missed but the score crept up to 46 -14. Don’t get the impression that Lions had given up as they were trying to muster their own attacks. In truth, however, Tigers were playing some very good rugby and Lions just happened to be on the receiving end. Maybe it’s the harder pitches or the sunshine on their backs but it was certainly the vintage play that we saw at the start of the season… and it wasn’t all over. As a final flourish from Tigers Packard picked the ball up on the halfway line and set off for the line which was 50m away. With grace and elegance, he weaved his way to the line to score under the posts with Ireland converting and the score going over the half century at 53 -14. Will Archer replaced Ed Simmons in the front row and the game moved towards its conclusion. Lions, however, were not going to lie down and with 5 minutes remaining they launched their own attack with second row William Nankivell crossing the lie to make it 53-19. The drop goal missed as Lions rushed back to get the game restarted clearly hoping for one more try and a bonus point. Tigers, for once, shut the game down by attacking and keeping the ball in the visitors’ half and the final whistle went to make it a 53 -19 victory (9 tries to 3)
Great to watch and, although relegated, I would be surprised if we didn’t see Peterborough Lions in 2 years coming back wiser and having learnt a lot. Well done to all the Tigers players it was a good all-round performance that was needed to boost the confidence of everyone who watched. Shame the Chairman missed it!!
Next up Hinckley away which is an eminently winnable game.
Before that the South Yorkshire Cup semi-final with Tigers 2nds taking on Sheffield Club at Abbeydale on Tuesday 9th April, 7.00pm k/o. Get down there to cheer the lads on.
Scorers: Tries: Broadly (2), Holland (1), Packard (4), Pond (1), Penalty Try
Conversions: Ireland (3)
Team: Bennett, Coates (Johnson), Simmons (Archer), Holland, Symcox Al, Rix (Adcock), Wallace, Bloor (Symcox An), Holmes, Ireland, Packard, Hart, Broadley, Pond, Mellor
Replacements: Archer, Johnson, Symcox An, Adcock, Davidson
Man of the match - Henri Packard
Match Report by: Graham Cockshutt
30/03/19 Tigers 1st XV 19 - 36 Tynedale
23/03/19 Tigers 1st XV 20 - 22 Wharfedale
No match report.
Scorers: Tries: Packard (1), Broadley (1), Davidson (1)
Conversions: Ireland (1)
Penalties: Ireland (1)
Team: Williams, Coates (Johnson), Simmons, Holland, Symcox Al (Townsend), Wragg , Wallace, Taylor-Dawes (Orton), Dowdeswell, Ireland, Packard, Hart, Broadley, Mellor, Davidson
Replacements: McDonald, Johnson, Orton, Townsend, Duffy
Man of the match - Henri Packard
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