The 4’s returned to league games after 2 weekends of cup action. The visitors were Carnforth 2nds, currently languishing near the bottom of the...
... league table.
Despite the sudden torrential downpour and sleet just before kick-off, the game got off to a good start.
Early Bolton pressure saw them spin the ball wide to winger Jamie Cairns, who took his man on, turned him and then legged it to the line to touch down. Within minutes, good forwards play had Bolton camped deep in the Carnforth 22. Carnforth turned the ball over and kicked to touch to clear their lines. The ball didn’t make it, Cairns was there to catch and take the direct route to cross the line again for his second try of the afternoon.
A good start, considering Bolton were down on their regular manpower and were giving two of the Colts team their first outing in Senior rugby. But Bolton took their foot off the pedal and allowed Carnforth to come back into the game. Powerful runs from their ‘8’ led to a short range try for Carnforth, which their 10 converted.
Realising that Carnforth were back in the game, Bolton applied pressure again. Ball carrying runs from Mark Higgins, Jordan Barnes and Jim Sharples gained ground. As they closed on the Carnforth line, James Gisborn took ‘route 1’ to power over the line.
Once again Carnforth came back and reduces the deficit with a penalty. Bolton added another try as Higgins outpaced the Carnforth defence to score in the corner. And again Carnforth came back with another converted try.
Half time Bolton 22 Carnforth 15. Still too close to call.
The second half was mostly attritional as both teams looked to distance themselves from their opposition. Bolton’s break came when a short line out throw saw Barnes heading for the line. Tackled just short of the line, he popped the ball to Higgins who bludgeoned his way thru the Carnforth winger, to score his second. Once again Carnforth responded and came back to look for points, finally adding another try to their tally.
From then, the Bolton defence held firm, with Colts player Liam Hampson turning over some good ball.
Final score Bolton 4th 27 Carnforth 20.