Douglas 7 Northwich 14
One to remember.
Douglas IOM 7 Northwich 14
“I was there” the lucky handful of supporters who made the journey to the Isle of Man will be able to make this statement and no doubt regale people with tales of derring-do that may even include spectators. As far as Northwich were concerned this was a memorable match which will be talked about for years to come. The sight of Chris James and his peers leaving the field battered and bruised will be indelibly stamped in the memories of the faithful. The build up was not the best as the flight carrying the players was delayed leaving the advanced party wondering if the match would take place. The heavy rain and poor light did put the match in doubt. Having enjoyed the excellent pre-match hospitality provided by Douglas the faithful settled down to watch the match with little expectation.
The match started with the visitors enjoying early possession and showing ambition as the back row of James, Naylor and Clark seemed to be first to every breakdown. The breakthrough came on the 15th minute as Northwich had a lineout close to the Douglas line. With the ball secured the blacks drove for the line and despite resilient defending Bradshaw eventually crossed for the try. Baldwin added the extras giving the blacks a 7 point lead. It is not hard to see why Douglas are flying high they showed excellent control of the ball as they tried to get back on terms. As the 20 minute mark approached a clearance kick from the blacks provided the opportunity for the home side to counter. As they kept the Northwich defence busy space opened up and the ball was moved to the wing for a try. The extras were added and parity restored. For the next 20 minutes it was the visitors that took the match to Douglas with Richard Dale and James Underhill shining in the mid-field. From a lineout on the 32nd minute Baldwin produced an up-and-under, the ball was recovered and the ball was moved to the right wing. The ball was quickly recycled and Baldwin produced a fine cross field kick for Du Randt to collect and score in the corner. Baldwin converted and scored what turned out to be the final points of the match.
The second half almost entirely belonged to Douglas as the tried to break the blacks defensive line. Wave after wave of attacks were thwarted by the heroics of the whole team. The communication and commitment to the cause was immense with everyone playing their part. This was a great match played out by two excellent teams which left everyone breathless. The delight on the faces of the Northwich contingent could not be disguised as the looked forward to another in Douglas.
Final score 14-7 to Northwich
Martin Poste could not hide his pleasure in the way the lads acquitted themselves and once again singled out the young Tom Clark for honors although Douglas picked Sam Naylor as Man of the Match.
As a final note I would advise anyone who is thinking of flying not to leave a butter knife (yes a butter knife) in you jacket as Dave Johnson is now under surveillance from the counter terrorist division.
Next week Northwich entertain Broughton Park KO 2.15pm
1 Joe Maddocks 2 Mike Gough 3 Chris Bradshaw 4 Chris Heywood 5 Matt Ensor 6 Chris James 7 Tom Clark 8 Sam Naylor 9 Matt Poste (Capt) 10 Nick Baldwin 11 Will Du Randt 12 Richard Dale13 James Underhill 14 Hayden Skinkis 15 Joel Barber 16 Tom Husbands 17 Adam Bennett 18 Robin Houghton