Match Report
Heath RUFC (28) vs Bradford & Bingley (0)
Saturday 10 November 2007
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Back to winning ways.

Reporter: Spud Taylor.
Dated: 30 November -0001
Heath 2nds. The Seconds took to the field at West Vale entertaining Bradford and Bingley 3rd xv in a friendly fixture. The game was delayed for 15 minutes to allow for the late arrival of a number of ‘Bees’ players. However, the game had to start with ‘Bees’ having only 11 players and Heath immediately took advantage of the extra men when they stole a line out on halfway and the ball was kicked downfield. The opposing fullback kicked the ball back but this was fielded by full back, Colin HEWISON, who made good ground before the ball found itself in the hands of the supporting Oliver COOK who sprinted in from 25 metres to open the scoring after only 2 minutes play. The conversion was successful from Mick GLEESON. This was an excellent start by Heath 7-0. ‘Bees’ increased their playing staff to 14 at this stage. Heath continued to press and Colin HEWISON was regularly running the ball back with interest from kicks downfield by ‘Bees’. One such run led to quickly recycled ball being taken on initially by outside half, Mick GLEESON, before he put second row, ‘Rocky’ ROYSTON away with a deft inside pass. He took the ball up but lost possession of the ball in contact. Shortly afterwards, the ‘Bees’ scrum was put under pressure in their own ‘22’ and the scrum half was caught in possession and subsequently penalised for ‘holding on’ directly in front of the posts which gave Mick GLEESON the easy opportunity to increase the lead which he did. 10-0 after 11 minutes. For the next 15 minutes, Heath were continuing to dominate proceedings, being assisted by several moments of dissent from the ‘Bees’ outside half who was penalised for his actions. However, Heath were not able to make the pressure tell. They were going into a tackle situation and standing up in the tackle and the wily ‘Bees’ forwards were just tying up the ball and gaining the resulting scrummage. Heath needed to be getting the ball to ground, gaining quick ruck possession to utilise the backs. However, the lead was increased after 25 minutes when Mick GLEESON kicked deep into ‘Bees’ territory where the defending side conceded a penalty. The ball was kicked to touch and Heath won the line out and took the ball forward. After a couple of phases, Mick GLEESON made an excellent outside break and passed to the supporting Oliver COOK on his outside who made good ground from 20 metres to score his and the teams second try of the match in the corner. Although the conversion landed just short, 15-0 was satisfactory at this stage. Heath were keeping the opponents well under control with effective tackling, a typical example being when the burly ‘Bees’ full back ran the ball out of defence and although he got up a good head of steam, he was met head – on by wing forward, Richard DANCE who showed excellent technique taking his man to ground. Further Heath pressure ended when the ‘Bees’ outside half made a clearance kick which hit centre, Dave CRAIGIE, full on the forehead. Unfortunately, Dave was unable to direct his header to his supporting wing man!!!! Heath were awarded a further penalty after 29 minutes some 20 metres out and the kick was put over by Mick GLEESON. 18-0. No further score followed in the remaining minutes of the half but 18-0 at half time was exactly what was required for the Heath lads. Heath continued to dominate proceedings in the second half and almost scored a try when scrum half, Matthew HALLETT, made a good 20 metre break from a scrum. Quick ball followed and it was taken on by prop Rick CARTER to within 5 metres of the ‘Bees’ line. Again, the ball was won and Mick GLEESON passed the ball out to right winger, Martin BARNES, who showed strength and determination but was tackled just short of the line and ‘Bees’ cleared their lines. Shortly afterwards, a chip through was chased well by Martin BARNES who caught his opposite number in possession. The ball was won and passed to ‘Rocky’ who made ground before being tackled. Again quick ball followed and the ball found its way to Dave CRAIGIE who fed Colin HEWISON with a sublime inside ball but unfortunately he lost possession of the ball some 5 metres from the opposition line. After 55 minutes, replacement Michael STEAD entered the fray for young Will NICHOLSON, a makeshift left winger who did a good job for the home side during the game. Richard DANCE went to wing, Oliver COOK went into the back row and STEADY took up his position in the 2nd row. Play was concentrated almost totally in the opposition half now with Mick GLEESON putting in some excellent ground-gaining kicks deep into ‘Bees’ territory. Heath were rewarded for their pressure when Mick GLEESON chipped through but was taken out of the game late by his opposite number leading to the award of a penalty which was successfully converted by Mick himself and also the sin binning of the ‘Bees’ outside half. 21-0 after 61 minutes. After 70 minutes, prop Roger HAMMOND left the field to be replaced by Alfie BAXTER, the young pup having already played for the ’12 x 12’ team on the adjacent pitch. He was followed shortly afterwards by hooker, Ian CRAIGON, who left the field with a calf injury. Heath were now having to play the last few minutes with 13 men, STEADY having been sinbinned for his part in a wee scuffle just beforehand. Heath finished the game off with a further score after the ‘Bees’ backs had tried to run the ball from their own ‘22’ but were getting nowhere against solid tackling by the Heath lads. They eventually resorted to kicking upfield. Unfortunately for them, the kick was charged down by young HALLETT who picked up the ball and dived spectacularly between the sticks for a try converted by Mick GLEESON to give a final score of 28-0 Man of the Match awards went to Oliver COOK in the forwards who had a good game in tight and loose and he was rewarded for his efforts with 2 good tries and centre Dave ‘The header’ CRAIGIE who was solid in defence and created opportunities in attack. After what can only be described as a poor run of heavy defeats, the Heath lads got stuck in today from the off and were rewarded with a victory made even more sweet by the keeping of a clean sheet. This win will hopefully lift the lads and give them confidence for future fixtures. It was good to see smiling faces in the bar afterwards!!! Long may it continue. Special thanks today must go to captain for the day, James WHEELWRIGHT, who again led from the front and also prop, Roger HAMMOND. Roger had turned up suffering from the effects of a heavy cold and not feeling in the best of health to say the least. However, he took to the field and managed 70 minutes before being replaced (for an unrelated injury). This is the sort of example which hopefully, other players will follow, Roger showing tremendous grit and determination to play come what may in a struggling side when it would have been more than acceptable to ‘cry off’. Cheers, Roger.
Martyn Barnes off on a run.
Matt just caught
TD breaks away.
My ball.



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