Disappointment for Moor
Home side control second half to secure victory
Moor travelled to Wigan looking to start the New Year with a victory over fellow promotion chasers Aspull. The game was always going to be a close affair between the third and fourth placed sides in the league and so it proved.
Aspull were looking to make amends for their sole loss this season when an excellent Moor performance put the Wiganers to the sword in a resounding win at Green Lane in September. The game was played on what appeared to be an excellent surface but was clearly soft underfoot with little or no wind.
Proceedings commenced with both sides working diligently through their forwards in what was becoming a rather dour affair with both backlines largely redundant until a sharp break from Perkins Joseph found a gap in the Lancastrians defence that forced an excellent tackle from the Aspull fullback to deny Moor the opening score.
Moor though weren't to be denied for long after full back Chris Sutton fielded a poor clearance kick out wide before running the ball back that saw the ball moved across field where a telling break from wing Kingsley Child looked like he was going all the way before he was hauled down just short of the line where he found the omni present Tom Ireland following up with a deft offload for Tom to open the scoring in the left hand corner. A difficult conversion was missed.
On 17 minutes Aspull pulled level after poor control of the ball at the ruck gifted the home side possession that saw the ball moved right where the home wing found space to tie the scores at 5 all for what would be the last try of the day.
The sides turned round with the game very much in the balance and it was to become clear that the game would be won by the side who could control possession and territory and that side was to be Aspull as try as they might Moor simply couldn't gain any kind of foothold in the game as the home midfield soaked up everything Heaton Moor could throw at them. Far to often Moor lost possession as each attack foundered from poor handling or being turned over due to a lack of support or poor body position whilst taking the ball in to contact.
With the home side starting to grow in confidence four second half penalties saw Aspull pull away before Moor managed any kind of noteworthy attack. For the last 5 minutes of the game Heaton Moor laid siege to the home line but excellent defence kept the line intact that saw Aspull run out worthy winners 17-5.
Not a great day for Moor who despite restricting Aspull to a single try couldn't break down the home defence and sorely missed No 8 Ben Jones and Tighthead Sam Ireland in the ball carrying department.
Next up is Winnington Park where the boys will be looking to bounce back against the league leaders.