2XV stay top of the league with 36-12 victory vs Didsbury TocH
going 5 points clear and chasing promotion
Altrincham Kersal 2XV 36-12 Didsbury Toc H 2XV
After a week’s break in their fixtures, Kersal 2nd XV returned to action at Stelfox Avenue against Didsbury Toc H 2XV in a bid to continue their winning run in the league.
Didsbury started the match strongly and Kersal ill-discipline with their penalty count kept them pinned back in their own territory. Kersal’s defence however stood firm and at the first opportunity they had, Kersal crossed the tryline after some slick movement of the ball through the hands by the backs put winger Matt Moss in for the score. That kicked Kersal into action and they began to dictate play for the remainder of the half. Forward runners off the breakdown allowed them to continually cross the gain line; sustained efforts lead to a score on the half hour mark, as a strong run and pass from flanker Jon Dodd put prop Paul Appleton in for a try under the posts. It was only a matter of moments later that Kersal got their 3rd try, as Chris Weighell stormed up the pitch on a powerful run from the kick off, which put Kersal in prime position for another attack. Flanker John Dodd got a try of his own as he sliced through the Didsbury defensive line to dot down underneath the posts. Kersal couldn’t quite keep Didsbury out to give them a scoreless first half, as phase on phase they kept the ball close and they trundled over with the last play of the half to make the score 19-7 going into the break.
Kersal knew not to get overly-complacent at half-time and made sure they carried on executing their game plan into the second half. It was 10 minutes before Kersal got the second half points rolling as full-back Andy Frain found space out wide and scored his first try for the team. Didsbury responded soon after with lineout in the Kersal 22, followed by a powerful driving maul giving them a try, making the scoreline 24-12 with plenty of time still left on the clock. Both teams then kept each other out with some solid defensive work, and tempers began to bubble and flair as several yellow cards and one red for the opposition prop were issued in a short space of time. Kersal, down to 12 men at one point, then took control of the game well and played smart rugby keeping hold of possession and playing rugby the opposition’s territory. With the clock winding down there was still time for more scores. To the delight of the watching crowd, the returning Cameron Thornburn crossed for a try from short range after some powerful forward play gained ground. Minutes later Paul Howarth crossed for the game’s final score after breaking in midfield on halfway then out wide, to eventually score underneath the posts.
Tries: Matt Moss, Paul Appleton, Jon Dodd, Andy Frain, Cameron Thornburn, Paul Howarth
Conv: Jack Braithwaite (x2), Paul Howarth (x1)
The win against Didsbury sees Kersal stay top of the league, 5 points clear of the 3 teams beneath them, along with Kersal all chasing the 2 promotion spots. Next week sees another break in the fixtures for the 2nd team, with a return to action on the 3rd March with an away trip to Widnes, where they will be aiming to put right the defeat in the reverse fixture earlier in the season.