15/04/17 Tigers 1st XV home walkover v Otley
Tigers through to the Yorkshire Cup Final after Otley were unable to fulfil this Semi-Final tie due to a lack of front-row forwards after injuries during training on thursday night. In the other Semi-Final, Harrogate beat Hull 25 - 10 so it will be a repeat of last year's Final but not with the same result we hope....
08/04/17 Tigers 1st XV 40 - 41 Tynedale
Tigers made the long trip to Tynedale on Saturday and came away with 2 points. That, however, does no justice to the fact that until the final 30 seconds Tigers were leading 40 -38. Unfortunately, as we've done to others in the past, a last kick penalty gave the home side a 41 - 40 win.
The score was one that reflected the seesaw nature of a game that Tigers had, at one stage, looked to have in their grasp but were eventually pipped at the post by a side who realised that if they deprived Tigers of the ball they couldn't score.
Tigers opened up a 0 - 16 lead after just 20 minutes through 3 Mark Ireland penalties and a converted Peter Swatkins try. Tynedale came back with 2 converted tries to make it 14 - 16. Tigers responded almost immediately with a Liam Wallace try and an Ireland conversion to go in 14 - 23 ahead at half-time. Tynedale came out with a new "starvation" plan in the second half and having got a quick try that was converted got the score back to 21 - 23. The problem the home side faced, of course, is that they also had to try and score which eventually led to Tigers getting some ball and they knew exactly what to do with it . A great run by Lee Monks resulted in a converted try which was followed, just 1 minute later, by a second Wallace try which was again converted by Ireland to give Tigers a 21 - 37 lead with 17 minutes to go. From the restart Tynedale threw everything they had at the Tigers defence and scored 2 converted tries and a penalty in the space of 6 minutes to make it 38 -37 with 9 minutes to go. With just 3 minutes left Ireland slotted over another penalty to restore the lead at 38 - 40 only to see victory snatched away when a penalty was conceeded and with the last kick of the game Tynedale took the points to win by 41 - 40.
With Harrogate taking 5 points at Preston Tigers now need to look at N2S and see who finishes 3rd from bottom and how many points they have. Why? Well the RFU in its wisdom have decided that whichever team finishes 3 from bottom between N2N and N2S and has the least points will be relegated.
This week the team take on Otley at Dore Moor in a Yorkshire Cup Semi Final. It is a rare home cup game for Tigers so get behind the team and shout your support.
Scorers: Tries: Monks (1), Swatkins (1), Wallace (2)
Conversions: Ireland (4)
Penalties: Ireland (4)
Team: Bennett, Thornton (Coates), Bingham (Gelsthorpe), Orton (Monks), Leeming, Wragg (Symcox) , Sullivan, Walker, Holmes (Dunn), Ireland, Searle, Wallace, Buchanan , Broadley, Swatkins
Replacements: Coates, Gelsthorpe, Monks, Symcox, Dunn
01/04/17 Tigers 1st XV 27 - 22 Hinckley
Another Saturday another must win game. With a good crowd watching, a relatively dry pitch and on a winning run Hinckley kicked off with the strengthening wind behind them. Tigers gathered the ball and Mark Ireland immediately cleared it up field for a line-out. A not straight decision resulted in a scrum in which the large Hinckley pack seemed to be relishing. Tigers found themselves moving backwards and the resulting penalty was converted by the visitors fly-half (Wilson) and Tigers were 0 - 3 down after just 3 minutes. From the restart, Tigers put Hinckley on the backfoot and it was Hinckley’s turn to fall foul of the referee. Tigers went for field position and good forward runs by Nick Bingham, Steve Walker and Ben Sullivan looked promising until a turnover allowed the visitors to clear their line. A good take by Aidan Leeming allowed Ryan Holmes to get quick ball through the backs and, after a quick pass from Jon Buchanan, Peter Swatkins went over for his 100th try in Tigers colours. From the touchline and against the wind Ireland added the extras and Tigers moved ahead by 7 - 3. The visitors began to apply their own pressure but a determined Tigers were unflinching in defence. The play was in the middle of the pitch but a good kick resulted in a knock-on with Tigers penalised, not for the last time, in the scrum. The game was well balanced but penalties were being conceded by both teams and eventually an error by Tigers allowed the Hinckley fullback (Smith) to join the line and go over for a try that was converted and gave them a 7 – 10 advantage. It was clear at this stage that, whilst the visitors had the bulk, Tigers had the speed. Both sides had attacking chances but Tigers were now spending a lot of time in the visitors 22. All the pressure proved fruitless and Tigers went in at half-time knowing they should be ahead but with the wind behind them in the second half.
From the restart Tigers applied pressure with Jamie Broadley making a good break and winning a penalty which was converted by Ireland, 10 - 10 and game on. It was now Hinckley’s turn to attack and from a 5m line out they tried the rolling maul. It was difficult to defend given the size of the Hinckley pack and the replacement hooker (Coltman) went over for a converted try to make it 10 - 17. Tigers fought back as we know they can. The visitors’ big boys were now beginning to flag and parity in the scrums gave Tigers more possession to play with. A penalty in the scrum was converted by Ireland and 13 - 17 helped Tigers realise that the game was there for the taking. The home side now launched a number of attacks but a resolute defence kept them out. Eventually the breakthrough came when good line-out ball allowed the ball to move quickly through the backs to find Swatkins in the line and heading for the corner. This time he was caught but had already fed the ball out to his partner in crime, Broadley, who went over in the corner. One again the accuracy of Ireland made it a 7 pointer and Tigers now had a lead of 20 - 17. The roller coaster of a game continued with the crowd roaring on the home side but Hinckley were not ready to roll over. They kicked yet another penalty into the corner to win a 5m line out but they gave it away by not releasing the ball in a tackle. This allowed the home side a chance to clear up to halfway and launch another attack. A well won line-out allowed Buchanan to make yet another powerful run and get the ball away to Swatkins who, from the halfway line danced his way through like Rudolph Nureyev on speed (or was it Rudolph the Red nosed Reindeer?). His balletic grace saw him cross the line and the trusty Ireland boot gave Tigers a 27 – 17 lead with 20 minutes to play. The hard working Frank Wragg was replaced by the human bullet known as Lee Monks who, with the wrecking ball that is Buchanan and the indestructible Walker, now showed their defensive and attacking skills in equal measure. Leeming was taking line-out ball and this was allowing Tigers to attack. Hinckley tightened up their defence but were now noticeably slower moving around the pitch. The resourceful Holmes, power man Lee Orton, ball winner Ross Thornton, and the animal known as Nick Bingham were all replaced by Charlie Dunn, Al Symcox, Tom Coates and Junior Gelsthorpe respectively. The tempo did not drop and good defence and attack was on display by both sides. With 1 minute remaining Hinckley won a penalty and cleared it well in to the Tigers half. From the line-out, Tigers knocked-on and the scrum allowed the visitors one last attack. They took the chance and the flyhalf (Wilson) crossed the line to score but he missed what was to be the last kick of the game to make it Tigers 27 – 22 Hinckley.
A great game of rugby to watch and, with other results going our way, we moved to within 1pt of 4th bottom. The dream lives on. Next week it is Tynedale Away but they are beatable and that’s what we need to do. Get on the coach and get up there to cheer them on…MAKE SOME NOISE!!!!
Scorers: Tries: Broadley (1), Swatkins (2)
Conversions: Ireland (3)
Penalties: Ireland (2)
Team: Bennett, Thornton (Coates), Bingham (Gelsthorpe), Orton (Symcox), Leeming, Wragg (Monks) , Sullivan, Walker, Holmes (Dunn), Ireland, Searle, Wallace, Buchanan , Broadley, Swatkins
Replacements: Coates, Gelsthorpe, Monks, Symcox, Dunn
Man of the match - Nick Bingham
Match Report: Graham Cockshutt