Firstly, apologies for the late timing of the match report this week. Working away and IT gremlins haven’t been kind, but hopefully we’re back on schedule now!
This Sunday saw Gorton Street hosting the boys from neighbouring Tyldseley. Having been on a bit of a winning streak recently, and having beaten Tydesley back in November, would Eccles continue on a roll, or would complacency set in?
It was to be a game of three halves again, giving everyone a chance to shine…
(3) Maxwell, (4) Carter, (5) Jack, (6) Evan, (7) Ollie, (11) Ethan, (15) Lucas, (17) Joseph, (19) Sohan
The first half was to be a hard fought affair. The opening battles on the pitch hadn’t been going long but it seemed like an age before the first try was scored. Both teams had their share of big fellas and Tyldesley appeared keen to use their brute force to get the ball through. However, with Sohan, Maxwell, Carter and Jack providing the muscle for Eccles, it wasn’t going to work for the Tyldesley boys.
With such valiant efforts in attack and defence, it wasn’t long before the game claimed Evan as it’s first casualty. Having taken some studs to the leg and putting him out of the game, Matthew was brought on in his place.
The ongoing stalemate continued until their large forward looked likely to break through the defence, but Lucas made a great tackle around the legs to stop him in his tracks. However, it wasn’t long before Tyldesley took first blood. 0-1
Now losing against a team they thought might be an easy opponent, the boys semed to buck up their ideas. The score drought now over, Eccles began a commanding performance of the field.
Jack, who has been showing some great team-work in the last few games, was able to get the ball out to the wing enabling Ethan to make his dash up the right wing hotly pursued to the corner flag by Tyldesley. Eccles’ first try was given; the score equal on 1-1.
Soon after a loose ball from the maul was picked up by Ethan who decides to run up the left wing to make it 2-1.
It was then Ollie’s turn to show his skills with the ball, deftly making it across the pitch to end the first half with Eccles up 3-1.
(1) Bailey, (2) Jake H, (7) Ollie, (10) Scott, (14) Adam C, (18) Alfie, (20) Jacob, (21) Shayne, (22) Matthew
Tyldesley started the second half reinvigorated from their team talk and were on the attack. It wasn’t long before they got the ball out to an undefended wing enabling them to score an easy try and closing Eccles’ lead. 3-2
From the restart, Scott made a great run down the pitch, despite a bad leg, but Tyldesley were quick on their feet to deny him a score.
The opposition, still hungry for tries, continued to apply the pressure and came dangerously close to scoring. With their forward diving for the line, he was within reach of a try. As his outreaching arms were within milliseconds of putting the ball down behind the line, he was yanked back depriving Tyldesley of the try. I was too fixated on the ball, hanging mere inches from the floor, to see who it was, but whoever it was, good job that lad!
Matthew intercepted a Tyldesley pass and made a run through the defence, only to be caught 5m from the try line. In close support of his team mate, Ollie retrieved the ball to score his second. 4-2
With competitive spirits up and Eccles preparing for war rather than rugby, some rather unsporting comments were made, upsetting the coaches and the ref. With our boys warned that the next infraction would be met with a sending off, it wasn’t long before Alfie is warming the side-lines for a high tackle.
Tyldesley were on the offense again getting dangerously close to Eccle’s line. With the boys succesfully holding off the attack, it came down to a fumbled ball spilling over Eccles try line. Unfortunately Tyldesley dive on it first to claim a try. 4-3
In the closing moments of the half, Bailey took a hit to the head and was helped out by Jake. Effectively down to 6 lads in play, Tyldesley took the opportunity to exploit their strength in numbers. Despite great efforts in defence by Shayne, Jacob and Adam, they were outnumbered 3 to 2, it was inevitable that Tyldesley would equalise at 4-4.
(3) Maxwell, (4) Carter, (5) Jack, (6) Evan, (10) Scott, (11) Ethan, (15) Lucas, (17) Joseph, (19) Sohan
The scores now equal, it was all to play for. Carter worked hard and looked good for a score, but was taken down. Lucas in the right place at the right time in support finishes the play and scores! 5-4
Tyldesley are quick to regain possession after Lucas puts them into touch, but it isn’t long before they find a try and keep them in the game. 5-5
Continuing to attack on the wing, Lucas defends well to prevent them taking the lead and helping Eccles regain possession. Ethan puts in a blazing run for his hat trick. 6-5
For the third time in the match, there was danger on the Eccles line with Tyldesley so close to scoring. Joe did well to prevent them getting the ball across the line, giving the team precious time to regroup and regain possession.
Ethan makes another dash down the line only to trip metres from the line and a knock on is given.
Carter made a break from the pack but a lucky tackle prevented his try. Jack, putting in a great work rate, was in position to carry on the attack and score. 7-5
Unlucky Joe has a try disallowed in the final minute, but doesn’t give up, getting another over the line a minute later to end the game on 8-5.
(1) Bailey, (2) Jake H, (3) Maxwell, (4) Carter, (5) Jack, (6) Evan, (7) Ollie, (10) Scott, (11) Ethan, (14) Adam C, (15) Lucas, (17) Joseph, (18) Alfie, (19) Sohan, (20) Jacob, (21) Shayne, (22) Matthew, and Liam.
Running around the pitch in its current state is like running through plasticene, so it’s important to pass the ball down the line. Get the ball doing the work and save the leg work!
The boys showed great commitment and effort towards the end of the match today. Well done on another win!
Next Sunday 28th is training, starting at 10.30
PS If I’ve missed anyone off, or omitted some remarkable on-pitch activity, please let me know and I can update the reports. Any good photos for the match reports are also appreciated!