1st XV
Sat 06 Apr 2024
Hope Valley RFC
1st XV
Tries: H Oldridge , J Oldridge (2), W Boot, A NotherConversions: O TibenhamYellow Carded: M Johnson, S Rawson


IAN BROAD7 Apr - 14:34
Share via

Great end to a difficult season

After six months inactivity Valley, bolstered by some recruits from Stocksbridge RFC, made their first ever trip to Wortley to face the Yorkshire Merit Table club and, despite it appearing to be a perfect day for rugby, the first decision was whether to play with or against the wind and the tide and how to avoid the Saharan sand storm being whipped up pitchside.

Having sorted out the colour clash the game kicked off in front of an enthusiastic crowd and it was the home team who made the early running as it became apparent which Valley players had spent the past months keeping active, which had spent them down the pub and which had spent them on the sunbed.

Despite Wortley's early pressure and a yellow card for Matt Johnson it was Valley who opened the scoring when Jack Greaves made the initial break, the ball somehow finding its' way to Harry Oldridge, who sidestepped the full back to score a try converted by Oliver Tibenham (0-7) and this lead was soon extended when Jake Oldridge reacted quickest to a charged down kick to race away from the defence for the visitor's second try (0-12).

The game then entered a stagnant stage with both sides struggling to overcome the heavy conditions before exploding into life in the last six minutes of the half. Wortley finally completed a fluent handling move for a converted try (7-12), Jake Oldridge crashed over for his second try (7-17) before the home side again cut the lead with another try (12-17) and there was still time for Steve Rawson to earn Valley's second yellow card as he questioned the validity of another of the referee's contentious decisions.

The second half began with the referee evening up the numbers as Wortley were penalised for a high tackle and Valley, ringing the changes with three sets of fresh legs, soon extended their lead as Will Boot combined impressively with replacement scrum half Adam Frith with the former crossing for another unconverted try (12-22).

Both teams were tiring in the increasingly muddy conditions, but both refused to quit and it was Wortley who scored next (19-22), ensuring a nervous last ten minutes for Valley, but they responded superbly and more fluent handling saw Tom Kerr outpace the final defender to secure a hard fought, but deserved win.

Whilst the Club's playing future still remains uncertain it was great to see the lads back in the purple, green and white and playing (and celebrating) with the typical Valley spirit.

Tries: J.Oldridge (2), H.Oldridge, W.Boot, Kerr
Cons: Tibenham (1)
Yellow cards: Johnson, Rawson

Men of the match: Shared by the brothers, Jake Oldridge put in a typical all action performance rounded out with two tries while Harry Oldridge, playing in the unfamiliar flanker role, grafted hard in defence and scored the opening try.
Mandy of the match: Aside from his yellow card Steve Rawson's "Joe Marler-esque" header earned him the award.

Match details

Match date

Sat 06 Apr 2024


Team overview
Further reading

Team Sponsors

Sponsor - 1530 Restaurant
Sponsor - Bank House
Sponsor - Cafeology
Sponsor - Clive Eyre Ltd
Sponsor - Dunscar Farm
Sponsor - Foster's Chartered Surveyors
Sponsor - G.A.Green & sons
Sponsor - High Peak Scaffolding
Sponsor - Luc Charmasson
Sponsor - Networks
Sponsor - Nuclear Energy Components Ltd
Sponsor - Swiss Tap
Sponsor & post-match hospitality - The Woodroffe Arms
Sponsor - Toll Bar Fish and Chips
Sponsor - Wheston Middle Farm Estates
Sponsor - PD Contract  Service Ltd