Blues left to rue missed chances

Macclesfield Express - - SEARCH - NA­TIONAL 2 NORTH

STOUR­BRIDGE ................ 5 MAC­CLES­FIELD ............ 22

ALEXAN­DER HAN­NAH

MAC­CLES­FIELD be­gan their Na­tional 2 North cam­paign with a de­feat away at Stour­bridge. The Blues went down 22-5 in a game which saw far too many missed op­por­tu­ni­ties.

Macc en­joyed the lion’s share of the pos­ses­sion in the first half but failed to con­vert time on the ball into points on the board.

Stour­bridge took the lead 20 min­utes into the first half, heav­ily against the run of play. A fine break down the wing saw flanker Ta­tenda Mukarati cross the white­wash.

The score seemed to set­tle the hosts into the game and they be­gan to en­joy a lit­tle more pos­ses­sion.

The in­creased pos­ses­sion was soon con­verted into points, some­thing Mac­cles­field could not do, Stour Fly-Half Chris Scott cross­ing for a try.

The hosts were then re­duced to 14 when full back Rod­ney Petty de­lib­er­ately knocked on when the Blues were through.

The Blues took ad­van- tage im­me­di­ately and scored what re­sulted to be their only points of the game.

Some solid line-out work from the for­wards re­sulted in clean ball for the backs, and Josh Fowles, who im­pressed in the first half, crossed the line out wide.

Still down to 14, Stour­bridge bounced back im­me­di­ately. A quick tap from scrum-half Ja­cob Nash saw them storm through and set up the score just be­fore the break.

The Blues came out af­ter half time know­ing that they would need to take their chances if they were gifted as much pos­ses­sion in the sec­ond pe­riod. How­ever, Stour­bridge showed fan­tas­tic game man­age­ment in the sec­ond half to keep the ball away from The Blues and limit Mac­cles­field’s threat.

Stour­bridge scored the only try of the sec­ond half on 65 min­utes through their gi­ant sub­sti­tute Robert Hur­rell. The big man found him­self within touch­ing dis­tance and man­aged to touch down, the score was con­verted to make it 22-5 to the hosts.

Mac­cles­field had to de­fend for much of the sec­ond half and fell foul of the ref­eree’s whis­tle on var­i­ous oc­ca­sions.

The Blues go into next week’s open­ing home game with much to im­prove on but will be sure to up the lev­els for the Pri­ory Park faith­ful.

To view high­lights of the week­end’s match, sim­ply en­ter Mac­cles­field Blues TV in a web search and the club’s youtube chan­nel should ap­pear!

15 R Petty, 14, J Bridger, 13 J Heat­ley, 12/22 R Othuha, 10 s Christo­pher, 9 J Nash – 1 S Thorp, 2/23 W Hard­ing, 3 M Ge­orge, 4 N Mur­phy, 5 L Mather, 6 T Mukarati, 7/21 R Pen­nock, 8 C Ni­cholls – 20 L Sinukas

15 O’Re­gan, 14 Fowles, 13 Brierley, 12 Ea­ton, 11 King, 10 L Barker, 9 Brookes - 1 Mills, 2 Moss, 3 Man­tell, 4 Mar­wick, 5 Jones, 6 Fin­nemore, 7 Parkin­son, 8 F Barker – 16 Melia, 17 Gadd, 18 Thorp, 19 Laing, 20 Mayor

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