Malton 19 Driffield 20
Malton & Norton 2ndXV played at home for the first time since 7th October in a local derby against Driffield. The visitors started on the front foot but determined defence kept Driffield at bay, Ben Fawcett
and Tom Smith
and repeatedly tackled and retrieved the ball. After 20 minutes of defending Driffield finally created the overlap and scored down the left wing, which was duly converted.
Malton came back with with intensity. For the first time, the forwards stayed on their feet and drove each other forward. The ball was then released to the backs. Jacob Stephenson
made a break, offloaded to Marc Dring who used his pace to outstrip the defence and score his first try in over 2 years.
Driffield then played for territory, kicks found grass rather than distance but Malton's back 3 too regularly played individually, were tackled and turned over. Driffield earnt themselves a penalty which was kicked to touch, a catch and drive resulted in a try. Driffield again probed with kicks into he 22, Malton could not deal with this tactic and earnt a penalty which was kicked to leave the half time score of 5/5
Malton started the second half with renewed vigour, the forwards carried harder with more support, they'd took the team into the opposition 22, Anton Wessells dummied, stepped and shimmied his way to a fine individual score which he converted, 12 5, game on.
Malton the pressed the destruct button, struggling to take the kick , the hit kooky and gained a scrum on their 22. Playing without a recognised hooker, for the first time hooked the ball well, unfortunately it hit the 2nd rows feet and bounced to the Driff no8s feet who broke blind, fed the scrum half who passed to the winger who needed no more of an invitation to score in the corner.
Malton started again but too many times, when Driffield kicked towards the corner, Malton ended up loosing yards.Boyh teams were reduced in numbers when the Driffield number 8 repeatedly punched Pete Hopkins on the floor, when the whistle was blew and the scuffle finished, Hopkins took exception and was verbally abusive to the aggressor.
Finally Malton gained territory through terrific play, firstly by Harry Coulson
, and then the Bulmer twins. The ball ws realeased and Wessells repeated his work from earlier to score and convert. 5 minutes remained and Malton were 1 point behind.
Malton took the game to Driffield, a break by Ross Harrison halted by a nasty looking high tackle, advantage was played, Tim Casey, who had a fine game was then sin binned for a high tackle on a Driffield player. Driffield then used there experience to play out he remaining minutes.
This was a local derby that Malton will feel they could have won, it was a game through their decisions that they did not deserve to win. Malton will need to be ready for a battle away at Marist next week.