A great performance against the league leaders
By Keith Warhurst
Is the weather EVER nice in Dukinfield?
After a narrow loss the previous week, Stockport were again on the road travelling to current league leaders Dukinfield who had only lost one game all season. It was never going to be an easy task but at least this week we had some subs to call on however despite this (and as usual) everyone’s a forward and no-one is a back (some would argue this is due to the fact that it’s far easier to be a forward thay a back). This meant another week of mixing and matching which saw 2 forwards in the back line and captain Kyle Chapman filling his favoured no.9 shirt. The game also saw the return of lock Ash Kieran’s having recovered from a bout of whooping cough (does that still affect people)?
Dukinfield kicked off playing against the wind and soon showed their hand with a kick into the corner which resulted in a very strong and well worked rolling maul finished off with a converted try. No more that 5 minutes had past when the home side repeated the same trick with the same result albeit with a missed conversion leaving Stockport 12-0 down after 5 minutes of play. Dukinfield continued to stick with their tried and tested formula, punishing every Stockport indiscretion with a kick to the same corner followed by a catch and drive however the away side were now smart to this and began to repel borders. Stockport then got back into the match after a rampaging run from No.8 Andy English saw the ball fed to wing Oye Oyuwumi who produced some magic and seemingly side stepped in a phone box to see him scamper over the line for a try converted by Chapman. Dukinfield hit back with another converted try stretching their lead to 19-7 but not to be outdone Stockport came straight back and a well worked line out saw English barge over for a try leaving the half time score at 19-12 to the home side.
The 2nd half was always going to be difficult playing into the wind for Stockport however they manfully stuck to their task with flankers Dan Zelinka and Johnny McPherson to the fore with their defensive efforts. However the away side’s resolve was eventually breached when the Dukinfield stand off managed to stroll over for a try that he converted himself with an excellent drop goal effort stretching the lead to 26-12. Stockport still refused to go away and now with nothing to lose, Stockport ran the ball from their own 22 which found its way to that man Oyuwumi who again confounded numerous tacklers and managed to score his 2nd and Stockport’s 3rd try converted by Chapman closing the gap to 26-19. With all to play for, both teams threw the kitchen sink at each other however it was the league leaders who showed why they are top when their stand off closed out the game with a huge drop goal from nothing to leave the final score at 29-19 for the home side.
A manful effort by Stockport who stuck to their task against a very solid and efficient Dukinfield side who showed exactly why they are top of the tree.