North Manchester V's Oldham RUFC
Preseason Warm Up
In near perfect conditions for running rugby, North prepared for the forth coming season with a club match against local rivals Oldham. The game was played over 4 x 20 minute sessions which allowed both coaches and both sets of players to adapt to the new laws. A quick brief from the referee on the changes and North kicked off. Alex Liley back from his travels didn't take long to get back into the swing of things , bossing the back of a solid North scrum, launching attack after attack on the Oldham line.
North had most of the ball, most of the territory and all the ideas but were unlucky not to go ahead when a well worked move from the base of the scrum linking backs and forwards but held up over the line. A second attack from an old but classic front of the line move saw Phil Pugh again held up over the line.The frustrations were soon put to bed when the terrier like Alex Liley went over the white wash for the first score. The kick was missed, fingers crossed we don't need the extra points!
The second 1/4 started when the same restart but Oldham kept them selves in the match by upping their game but too many silly mistakes from the young side went unpunished by North.
The second halve started with North on top, putting into practice the drills from the training field and it wasn't long before Sam Donley made his present felt when he crashed over the white wash to double the score. Some strong running from Mike Moore and great organisation from Oscar in the midfield allowed Messy and Yogie to enjoy their day in the sun with some good runs. Ben Benton replaced Alex at scrum half and kept up the pressure on Oldham. The last score came after some good defense from Oldham resulted in a scrummage to the visitors. Using the new laws to full advantage the No.8 picked the ball out of the scond rows feet and the half back cleared the kick. The ball was fielded but never held & dropped by the attacking North's wing Reece, "went back" shouted the ref. "play on" the ball went along the 3/4 line only for captain Lewis Higgins to run out of space. He kicked and chased in the visitors 22, fields his own kick as it bobbled across the line, kept control to score the 3rd and final score of the match. Again, for the 3rd time the extra points were missed
A good strong performance from the North players, still plenty of players missing, but a few headaches for selectors on this performance with a few players stepping up to the mark