Moor back to winning ways
Port Sunlight 13 - Heaton Moor 41
Moor travelled to the Wirral on Saturday to play Port Sunlight, eager to halt their recent run of defeats and with a somewhat changed squad from previous weeks, especially in the backs, there was always the chance that nerves and positional inexperience could possibly play a part in the outcome of the game.
This appeared to be the case in the opening exchanges as Moor gave away four penalties in as many minutes, to allow the home side to go ahead courtesy of a penalty kick. This lead was further extended when a few minutes later, on their first real incursion deep into the opposition’s territory, Moor dropped the ball and it was promptly hacked back up the field some 70 metres for Port to win the chase to touch down and score the softest of converted tries. To Moor’s credit however, they did not let this setback trouble them and from that point onwards were in control for the rest of the game. It did take them well into the second quarter to actually open their account, but once they did, the scoreboard ticked over. Their opening score came following a penalty kick to touch and a catch and drive from the resulting lineout provided No. 8, Ben Jones, with a try and Moor then took the lead when another rolling maul, adjudged by the referee to have been illegally halted, produced a penalty try. On the stroke of half-time, they had a chance to go further ahead as Jones drove over from a another set piece, but the referee decided that the ball had been held up, leaving the interval score 12-10 to Moor.
From the restart, Moor continued where they had left off and following a break by prop Dan Goodwin, Moor were again awarded another penalty to produce an identical score to their first; lineout, catch, drive, try by Jones. The visitors produced their only blot of this half when they had a man sin-binned for a high tackle and the home side added to their tally from the resulting penalty kick, but despite this handicap, Moor scored a further two tries whilst a man short, both converted by fullback, Ollie Reynolds. The first was by lock Jon Walters, following a number of pick and drives and the second was from replacement back Martin Shelley, when the ball was quickly switched down the blind side and he evaded the cover to score in the corner. From the restart, Moor again attacked and the ball was passed down the back line for replacement winger Jack Humpage to weave his way through the opposition defence to score out wide. The final 15 minutes proved to be a bit of an anti-climax as both sides seemed content to recover from their exertions, as the heavy ground and hectic play that had gone before took its toll on the players’ stamina. Even so, the visitors did have the final say deep into injury time, when scrum-half Rod McGahey produced a delicate chip over the advancing defence and Humpage ran through to gather and touch down, making the final score 41-13 to Moor. This was a sound, all-round performance from Moor, who, when they got going, executed their play well and hopefully banished any hangovers from the setbacks of the previous two weeks and with the number of players available set to increase over the next few weeks, it makes selection an interesting prospect for coach Mark Edwards.
Vagabonds from the Isle of Man are the visitors to Green Lane on Saturday, with the kick-off scheduled for 12 noon to accommodate their visitor’s travel arrangements.