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Heaton Moor 20 – Broughton Park 22

Heaton Moor 20 – Broughton Park 22

David Todd6 Mar - 10:52
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Déjà vu

Broughton Park were the visitors to Green Lane last Saturday and with the fixture between the sides last November being close and the outcome in the balance until the last couple of minutes, Moor were hoping that this time, with home advantage, they might reverse the result of that game, which they lost narrowly by three points. In the event, it was not to be, but the match did follow an almost identical pattern to that of the first, where the lead changed hands a number of times and Moor saw their lead disappear in the closing minutes.
The visitors kicked off and held the edge for the first ten minutes and on the few occasions that Moor did attempt to break out, this failed due to handling errors. Eventually, Park’s pressure paid off when they kicked a penalty goal from inside Moor’s 22 to open their account. Moor did respond almost immediately however, when from the restart they were awarded a penalty, which was kicked to touch just ten metres short of their opponent’s line. Winning the lineout, Moor set up a drive, but this was held up over the line. Although winning the resultant scrum, Park only managed a short clearance kick, allowing the home side to again set up yet another drive from the lineout, but again this was held up just short of the line. This time, the clearance kick by Park did not find touch, allowing Moor to counter-attack, but were then penalised for not releasing when tackled a few metres short. Park recovered from this pressure and midway through the half won themselves a penalty, which was kicked to touch deep into Moor's territory. Moor managed to win the subsequent lineout, only to lose possession when they were again penalised for not releasing in a tackle and the visitors took full advantage of this to extend their lead with another penalty goal. Shortly afterwards, Moor were again penalised, gifting their opponents another attacking lineout, which they won, but the former managed to halt the catch and drive that followed and cleared their lines. Moor then again pinched the subsequent lineout to set up their own attack and following a 50:22 kick, found themselves with a lineout some ten metres short of the Park line. Although this was won, yet another self-inflicted error ensued as the ball was lost in the drive. This proved to be only a short-term glitch however, as on their next attack, the ball was passed down their three-quarter line, allowing left-winger Myles Maclagan to loop round and take the final pass and score in the right-hand corner; the attempted conversion being just wide. Moor then kept the pressure on for the last ten minutes before the break and were rewarded in injury time when they took the lead with their second try. This followed a thirty metre kick-ahead by winger Sam Firth, which the visitors cleared into touch, granting Moor another attacking lineout. Winning the ball, Moor switched play one way and then the other, before flanker Archie Ward dived in at the corner, followed by a difficult conversion from the touchline by fly-half Antoon Lemmers, bringing the half to a close and a 12-6 lead for Moor.
The first ten minute after the interval found both sides being guilty of numerous infringements, handling errors and technical transgressions, thus handing possession to the other side when in promising attacking positions. Moor were eventually penalised on their own 22 for a deliberate knock-on, allowing Park to reduce the arrears with a penalty goal. From the restart, Park recycled the ball between both forwards and backs and a couple of less than effective tackles by Moor allowed them to burst through and score an unconverted try in the corner and retake the lead. Another restart and this time it was the hosts who benefited as their opponents were penalised on the Park 10-metre line, from where Leemers then kicked a goal for Moor to go back into the lead. With twenty minutes to go, Moor were penalised in their own half and rather stupidly, one of their players kicked the ball away and were again penalised by being marched back another ten metres and into kicking range, from where Park retook the lead with a penalty goal. This set-back was short-lived as Moor returned to the other end of the field and following a series of rucks near to the opposition's line, hooker Mike Maguire crossed the whitewash to score their third try, this time unconverted, as the home side once again took the lead. Park were not yet finished however, as in the last five minutes, Moor were penalised for collapsing a scrum, from where Park kicked the ball into touch, and then set up a driving maul following the lineout, before switching the ball to the blind side for one of their players to squeeze in at the corner for their second unconverted try and again retake the lead 22-20, which they kept until the final whistle.
Once again, Moor were left disappointed at the end having come close to victory and but for a number of self-inflicted errors and indiscipline, could well have run out winners.
Moor are at table-toppers Eccles on Saturday in a third attempt to play the original league game postponed from December, k.o. 3:00 p.m.
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