May­field reign in driv­ing rain

Rochdale Observer - - TIME-TRIP - IAN KER­SHAW

TOR­REN­TIAL rain hit May­field Rugby Club, and Rochdale, at weekend but May­field made light of the weather and ter­ri­ble con­di­tions to score thirty points against one of their clos­est op­po­nents for a top four fin­ish in the league.

West Hull brought a de­pleted team over the Pen­nines and with May­field still seem­ingly suf­fer­ing from the hor­rors of last week­ends show­ing, added to the aw­ful han­dling con­di­tions, the game had a poor start as both teams made a num­ber of un­forced er­rors.

West Hull were first to take ad­van­tage and scored a con­verted try on 7 min­utes to take a 0-6 lead.

This seemed to spark May­field into life and with De­clan Sheri­dan in­tro­duced to the play, they started to make in­roads. Prop for­wards Jimmy Con­naughton, Luke Fow­den and Ai­den Glee­son drove up­field and De­clan him­self darted through a gap but was stopped just short.

Not to be de­terred, De­clan dum­mied left and right on the line and Cal­lum Mar­riott smashed through for a try, con­verted by Zak Hart­ley to level the scores on 12 min­utes.

Ai­den Glee­son re­peated the feat five min­utes later, again off solid for­ward play and quick ac­tions from De­clan Sheri­dan. Zak Hart­ley con­verted for 12-6 and May­field seemed to have got to grips with the game as Jack Fran­cis and Nick Har­g­reaves added to the for­ward strike power.

Cal­lum Mar­riott was in im­pe­ri­ous form on at­tack and de­fence, and he scored his first try on 30 min­utes as May­field ripped up­field through quick play the balls then kicked deep and Liam Whal­ley chased hard to trap Hull in the cor­ner. Whal­ley then fol­lowed up with a mas­sive tackle to dis­lodge the ball and drew a high tackle penalty as he drove the loose ball to the line.

From the penalty, De­clan Sheri­dan again took ad­van­tage and found Cal­lum Mar­riott on a great line with short pass. Zak Hart­ley con­verted for 18-6.

West Hull re­fused to give up though and with half time looming they forced two drop-outs and earned a penalty to pres­sure the May­field try line, ben­e­fit­ting from poor com­mu­ni­ca­tion on May­field’s right of de­fence to take a con­verted try for 18-12 at half time.

May­field had shown glimpses of strong play but needed to show more.

They did just that in the first five min­utes and con­trolled play well with a deep kick that pinned the vis­i­tors back on their own line.

Strong de­fence forced good field po­si­tion for May­field and on the last tackle Zak Hart­ley found the match spon­sors Rochdale Bor­ough Darts manof-the-match, Cal­lum Mar­riott, with a short pass and he did the rest, crash­ing through the de­fence to com­plete his hat rick of tries, again con­verted by Hart­ley for 24-12.

The weather again turned for the worse and the game re­mained score­less for 15 min­utes de­spite May­field be­ing on top. Jack Fran­cis worked hard chas­ing a kick to the in­goal but was de­nied a try as the of­fi­cials, mis­tak­enly, thought he slid over the dead ball line.

The in­jus­tice seemed to spur the prop for­ward on and on the next set he pow­ered through the de­fence 40 me­tres out, scat­ter­ing de­fend­ers, and showed great pace to round the full back for a great try, con­verted by Hart­ley for 30-12.

In the last 20 min­utes May­field pressed hard with­out re­ward as first James McDaid was de­nied a try as he just stepped in touch whilst speed­ing down the right flank and then De­clan Sheri­dan, Sean Watkins and Nick Har­g­reaves were held just short of the try line.

The game seemed to have a fit­ting fi­nale as great hands right to left drew de­fend­ers and found space for Lewis But­ter­worth to fly in on the left cor­ner, but the ef­fort was de­nied for a for­ward pass and the game fin­ished 30-12.

De­clan Sheri­dan was awarded the of­fi­cial manof-the-match.

This was the fi­nal reg­u­lar sea­son game in the league and the win left May­field solid in third place in the league, three points above Wath Brow who have to win their last two games to over­haul them.

Ei­ther way a home play-off beck­ons for the Rochdale team, to be played on 30th Septem­ber.

Wayne English, Lewis But­ter­worth, Matty Ash­ton, Liam Whal­ley, James McDaid. Chris Hough, Zak Hart­ley. Luke Fow­den, Cal­lum Og­den, Jimmy Con­naughton, Sean Watkins, Cal­lum Mar­riott, Zac Baker. Nick Har­g­reaves, De­clan Sheri­dan, Ai­den Glee­son, Jack Fran­cis.

Ai­dan Glee­son snr

●●Jack Fran­cis storms in for a try against West Hull at May­field Sports Cen­tre

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