Leek’s squad was much the same with Jake Green at fullback and Ian Harris at scrum half with Jack Newton-Taylor on the wing and Shane Dicker back in the centre with Adam Nettel back in the pack and Dan Smith and Simon Drew as replacements
Unfortunately Leek were always chasing the game after a disastrous start saw them concede a penalty and then a try after 2 minutes when the Wolves No 8 emerged from the first maul and ran over in the Leek corner. To Leek’s credit they weathered this stormy start and after 6 minutes scored after Shane Dicker switched play and drove for the line before offloading to Andrew McFadden to score. So with both conversions missed the score was 5-5 after an exciting start which saw both sides eager to run the ball.
For the next 10 minutes play was up and down the field with both sides missing penalties as they tried to put pressure on each other. Eventually on 20 minutes Wolves scored on the left wing to put Leek behind 5-10 after a penalty was missed by Leek. This was followed by a poor clearance kick by Leek being run back at them and the Wolves flanker scoring a try by the posts. On 27 minutes this was followed by another Wolves try after their man of the match- their full back was allowed to run through Leek’s fragile defence and score.
So with the score 5-20 against Leek and Wolves looking much livelier than Leek it was important to make sure that the Leek game improved in attack and defence. Thankfully it did and after missing one penalty Jake Green converted one on 33 minutes. Then after several phases of play the local crowd saw Leek running the ball back at Wolves and finishing the first half 8-20 behind, showing great effort but losing possession at crucial times.
Within one minute of the restart Jake Green’s penalty had bounced over off the crossbar to close the score to and Leek was determined to attack Wolves and show their fitness—score 11-20. It was always going to be difficult for Leek to close the gap against a good Wolves team and after several powerful Leek attacks and penalties given against Wolves they extended the score after 53 minutes to 11-23 after a penalty for offside went against Leek.
On 57 minutes Leek won a penalty and kicked to touch only to lose the lineout close to the Wolves line. This summed up Leek’s game as a game of missed chances against a very good attacking side –but then a great passage of play and recycling possession saw Gary Mc Dermott make a break and pass inside to Jake Green to go under the posts and convert his own try after 61 minutes –score 18-23.
Leek were beginning to believe that they could catch Wolves up but within minutes their powerful No8 crashed over in the corner to see his try converted and Wolves go 23-30. As the game moved into the final quarter Leek were desperate to score and tried everything in their playbook to beat a strong defence. Eventually with 70 minutes on the clock Leek’s man of the match Charlie Futcher was backing up a fantastic forward drive and scored Leek’s last try—23-30
The final 10 minutes of the game were well contested and yet both sides failed to score again. The end was a disappointing result for Leek who knew that they had made chances but failed to convert them against a strong Wolves team who deserved to win this close game at the top of the table
Leek 2xv lost away to a strong Wolves side but Leek 3xv beat Cannock 2xv - both opposition teams are top of their merit tables
Next week sees Leek 1xv play Stafford away and Leek 2xv at home to Stafford both 3pm kick offs.3 game to be arranged
March 16 sees Leek 1xv entertain Uttoxeter for the Hanley Building Society Cup at 3pm