Cleve­leys crushed by ‘Kirk

Ormskirk Advertiser - - Martin Mere - BY VINCE EL­LIS

WITH a num­ber of en­forced changes in per­son­nel from last week’s win at Wi­gan, there was pre-match spec­u­la­tionas to how Orm­skirk might fare against a very good Thorn­ton Cleve­leys which had turned them over twice dur­ing the sea­son be­fore last.

It is also a side which is be­ing tipped for pro­mo­tion in the Lan­cashire league.

The vis­i­tors turned up plan­ning to take the points home with them and their open­ing for­ays would have given them hope of re­al­is­ing those plans as wave af­ter wave of big at­tacks hit the Orm­skirk line, each re­pelled with an in­creas­ing sense of con­fi­dence and self be­lief.

Big de­fen­sive dis­plays from for­wards Rouke, Ar­row­smith, Beswick, Ball and Hud­son along with the tackle bust­ing runs of Owens were su­perbly sup­ported by the mop­ping up play of backs Knowles, Hod­son, Web­ster, White and Thomp­son to per­sis­tently thwart the in­creas­ingly ir­ri­ta­ble vis­i­tors.

And so this pat­tern per­sisted for around 20 min­utes of non stop at­tack and re­pel with the vis­i­tors hav­ing noth­ing to show for their ef­forts.

The fail­ure to pen­e­trate the su­perbly mar­shalled home de­fen­sive line led to the vis­i­tors dis­play­ing lapses in dis­ci­pline, re­sult­ing in con­ced­ing free kicks which served to gain valu­able ground for the Greens and of­fer­ing ap­pre­ci­ated breaks in the de­fen­sive ef­forts.

Once the siege had been bro­ken, play re­ally opened up with both sides dis­play­ing top qual­ity ball han­dling skills as play swept out wide and to ei­ther end of the field at breath­tak­ing speed.

Fi­nally, the dead­lock was bro­ken fol­low­ing a pe­riod of Orm­skirk pres­sure and as the ball was swept from one side of the field to the other, Tom Owens dis­ap­peared un­der a pile of Thorn­ton de­fend­ers to emerge to the ref­eree’s arm raised to sig­nal a touch­down.

Although the try was scored out wide, Matty White had lit­tle trou­ble pop­ping the ball over the cross­bar to give Orm­skirk a 7-0 ad­van­tage.

With a blaz­ing sun per­sist­ing in a cloud­less sky, the half­time whis­tle was well re­ceived by the Greens as they had the ad­van­tage of play­ing with the low sun to their backs for the se­cond half.

From kick off to fi­nal whis­tle, the spec­ta­tors were treated to a scor­ing bo­nanza from the home side with a fur­ther five tries.

Fol­low­ing some big and pow­er­ful hole punch­ing bursts by Den­ton Wil­liams and qual­ity sup­port play from Aaron Ferry and Lee Ar­row­smith, play pro­gressed down field re­sult­ing in the in­creas­ingly in­flu­en­tial scrum half leav­ing de­fend­ers in his wake as he hap­pily skipped over the line, a big smile telling the story as he placed the ball between the posts, leav­ing a sim­ple con­ver­sion for Matty White to pop over.

A cou­ple of min­utes later Jake Hod­son, fol­low­ing a break and neat pass from David Web­ster, ghosted his way through de­fend­ers to touch down for the first of his three tries.

Again, the re­li­able kick­ing of Matty White added an ex­tra two points as his kick from out wide sailed over. 21-0 and as good as over? No chance of that as Thorn­ton threw ev­ery­thing they could muster at the home side, show­ing dis­plays of ex­cel­lent flow­ing and wide run­ning rugby which stretched each and ev­ery Orm­skirk player, invit­ing them to show their com­mit­ment to work for each other, the side and the club.

Again, wave af­ter wave of at­tack was fought off and as play moved down field, smart power and sup­port play from Tony Hud­son, Aaron ferry, Tom Owens and Kieran Den­ton Wil­liams cre­ated the op­por­tu­nity for Rob Hall to power his way through the des­per­ate grasps of the vis­i­tors’ de­fence to touch down un­der the posts and cre­ate an easy con­ver­sion kick for White.

28-0 and look­ing very good for Orm­skirk.

Thorn­ton weren’t ready to throw the towel in just yet and con­tin­ued to con­trib­ute to a fine spec­ta­cle of open run­ning, end to end rugby, be­ing re­warded as their winger danced over for the first of their two tries. The con­ver­sion at­tempt sailed wide, leav­ing the vis­i­tors trail­ing by twenty three points and with time tick­ing away.

All the un­re­warded of­fen­sive ef­fort be­gan to take its toll and a now vis­i­bly tired Thorn­ton Cleve­leys de­fence con­ceded two more tries to man of the match Jake Hod­son.

Matty White hoofed one kick over to give a score of 40-5 to the Greens.

The fi­nal play of the match saw the vis­i­tors re­warded with a well taken con­verted try to give a fi­nal score of 40-12.

What an en­ter­tain­ing match, fast, flow­ing, of­ten phys­i­cally bru­tal, fully com­mit­ted and per­haps most im­por­tantly, sport­ing. What’s not to like?

Next week sees a well earned Satur­day off be­fore what should be an­other tough match against Ea­gle.

Orm­skirk RUFC field a range of teams, Mi­nis, Ju­niors and Colts along with open age Men’s and Ladies teams.

We are al­ways wel­com­ing to po­ten­tial new play­ers, sup­port­ers and spon­sors so do feel free to pop down and have a look around.

Orm­skirk in ac­tion against Thorn­ton Cleve­leys Vince El­lis

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