Rochdale power to derby vic­tory

Rochdale Observer - - SCHOOL NEWS - DAN O’CONNELL

ON the back of two away wins, Rochdale u14s wel­comed lo­cal ri­vals Bury to Moor­gate Av­enue.

It was the first out­ing in the team’s new kit, kindly spon­sored by Re­side Es­tate Agents.

The weather had taken a turn for the worse and the go­ing was good to soft to use the racing ver­nac­u­lar.

Rochdale were out of the stalls quickly, as Nick Wright gath­ered the kick off and gal­loped down the left touch­line, only brought to ground a cou­ple of me­ters from the try line.

Bury turned the ball over but good de­fence saw Matty Dear­den and Ben Ker­shaw tackle the Bury player be­hind his own goal line and give Rochdale an at­tack­ing scrum. From the set piece, num­ber 8 Ben Sun­der­land picked up, catch­ing the Bury back row nap­ping, and forced his way over the line for the open­ing score which was con­verted by Mitch Holt.

The wind and driz­zle were be­hind Rochdale and it was dif­fi­cult for Bury to get out of their half. Bury have some speedy backs out wide and at­tempted to get the ball in their hands as quickly and of­ten as pos­si­ble.

How­ever, Rochdale have had plenty of prac­tice at cover­ing the out­side chan­nels against fast op­po­si­tion in re­cent weeks and, even though there were a cou­ple of breaches, the cover tack­ling was ex­em­plary.

Rochdale had made a few changes due to some ab­sen­tees and were ex­ploit­ing Taylor Hart­ley’s ball car­ry­ing skills in the cen­tre, giv­ing him plenty of space to charge into and he made good ground all day.

From more de­fen­sive pres­sure on the Bury line Dear­den scored a poacher’s try, drop­ping on the ball over the op­po­si­tion line for the sec­ond time in two weeks. The con­ver­sion was suc­cess­ful from close to the touch­line and Rochdale were begin­ning to dom­i­nate.

Bury did have a few for­ays into the home side’s 22 but the de­fence held firm and play re­turned to the op­po­site end of the field.

The sus­tained pres­sure was bring­ing a con­stant trickle of penal­ties and, when ball was turned over close to the Bury line, the ball was moved wide to Hart­ley who ex­tended his try scor­ing record with a thun­der­ing run through a split de­fence. Again the con­ver­sion was suc­cess­ful and Rochdale were set fair at 21-0 with half time ap­proach­ing.

With this plat­form the ex­pec­ta­tion was that Rochdale would im­pose them­selves fur­ther in the sec­ond half but, for some in­ex­pli­ca­ble rea­son, they be­gan to give away soft penal­ties and com­pounded these with indis­ci­pline which put them at odds with the of­fi­cial.

This un­for­tu­nately started to negate a lot of good things that they were do­ing.

Brad Row­ley had some strong car­ries, Paddy Ker­shaw cleared rucks and sup­ported well, James Tasker made some im­por­tant cover tack­les and re­turned the ball with some blis­ter­ing runs.

The half was cut short af­ter an in­jury to the Rochdale full back who, thank­fully, was able to leave the field of play un­der his own steam af­ter all pre­cau­tions were taken to en­sure his well­be­ing.

Thanks to the Bury con­tin­gent for their as­sis­tance and un­der­stand­ing.

An­other win for Rochdale and an­other clean sheet but there was a slight air of dis­ap­point­ment that they hadn’t been able to build on a good start.

Credit must be given to Bury who bat­tled man­fully for the full game both in de­fence and at­tack. MOTM James Tasker for ex­cel­lent work both with and with­out the ball.

Gar­rett My­ers, Billy Pirouzan, James O’Connell, Paddy Ker­shaw, Taylor Hart­ley, , Sonny Joyce, Ben­dan Hank­in­son, Char­lie Bleack­ley, Ben Sun­der­land, Joel Rigby, Kai Pot­ter, Brad Row­ley, Matthew Dear­den, Mitchell Holt, James Tasker, Matty Pendle­bury, Zak Baker, Ben Ker­shaw, Daniel Nobis, Oliver Simp­son, Nick Wright

●●Ac­tion from Rochdale un­der 14s clash against Bury

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