Burn hold on to win
Burn got 2018 off to a winning start in a hard fought 12-6 victory over Rochdale.
Burn made a bright start to the game, but never managed to push on and make the victory more convincing, instead as the game closed out it was Rochdale who were threatening the try line and could have stolen the win if it wasn’t for resolute defence from Burn.
Burn were facing a strong wind in the first half, however this didn’t appear to hamper them too much as they exerted early pressure on the visitors. Most of the early play was in the Rochdale half and the first Burn try came within 10 minutes, firstly a barnstorming run from Corey Logan broke through the defence and put Rochdale on the back foot, then from the breakdown Rob Bramhall gathered the ball just inside the 22 and he saw a gap straight ahead, he took the opportunity and went straight through, he then managed to fend off the remaining defender to score in the corner. Phil Baines was unable to kick the conversion. It wasn’t until the 15th minute that Rochdale managed to get into the Burn half and they came away with 3 points following a penalty kick. Burn secured their second try on 25 minutes, Harry Pilkington had made a couple of darting runs as Rochdale were pushed deeper into their 22, Burn kept recycling the ball and final managed to score as Gavin Harmer muscled his way over the try line following a half break from Ockert Erasmus. Phil Baines added the extra points and Burn led 12-3. After the try Rochdale came a lot more into the game and were pushing for a try, however they had to settle for another penalty kick. Rochdale kept up the pressure as Burn were being regularly penalised, the visitors had another penalty kick at goal, but the kick was missed. The half finished 12-6.
The wind seemed to die down and change direction as the second half kicked off, however Burn started the half brightly and dominated possession and territory, they kept pushing for the try line, but their opponents kept them out. On 10 minutes Burn’s cause should have been helped as a Rochdale man was sin binned, however despite their efforts Burn were unable to make the telling breakthrough. Burn remained on top, but mistakes prevented them maintaining sustained pressure and Rochdale were doing well to work their way out of danger. As the game entered the final 10 minutes Rochdale had their best period of the whole game as regular penalties pushed Burn deeper and deeper into their own 22. Rochdale were now the one’s pounding the try line, Burn’s task was made harder as James Henderson was shown a yellow card. Rochdale continued to keep pressurising Burn, however as well as Rochdale did to retain possession, Burn did better to resist the attacks and kept knocking their opponents down. In the end Burn’s defence held out and the game ended 12-6.
Burn will be content with the win, with the start they made they would have expected to score more tries and secure a bonus point, but this never happened, partly due to Burn’s mistakes and penalty count and partly due to Rochdale defending well and retaining position to relieve pressure. Next week Burn face a difficult away trip to Warrington.