Match Report
Heath RUFC (47) vs Dinnington (14)
Saturday 10 December 2011
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First Half Blitz wins the Game

Reporter: Ian Rushworth, courtesy Halifax Courier.
Dated: 30 November -0001
HEATH made light of soggy conditions at West Vale to run in six first-half tries against the next-to-bottom club in Yorkshire One. They romped into a 40-7 interval lead, showing a real cutting edge in attack, but spent much of the second period defending solidly against a toothless visiting side. Heath stay fifth in Yorkshire One but now only trail Keighley on points difference and a victory at lowly Knottingley next Saturday would send them into the Christmas break with hopes of chasing down top two Bridlington and Driffield in the first half of 2012. After the wholesale late changes of the previous week against Scarborough, Heath took to a field which had passed a couple of morning inspections with their selected side, including first team debutants Miles Fairbank and Chris Willett in the pack. And it was the forwards - props Ollie Cook and Chris Moore to be precise - who set them on their way with the first two tries inside 10 minutes. Heath hit the hesitant visitors hard, charging down an early clearance and winning a five metre scrum. Winger Matt Baxendale knocked on in the corner but a minute later, on the other side of the pitch, Cook forced his way over the try line for an unconverted try. Scrum half Richard Cole kicked Heath out of defence and the home side produced an impressive forward surge from a lineout on the Dinnington 22, Moore eventually muscling his way to the line. Fullback Ben Mitchell added the conversion and went on to notch 22 points. Just two minutes later the visitors shot themselves in the foot by conceding a soft third try. Cole cleared Dinnington’s restart down centre field and when a couple of players from the Sheffield club failed to gather the ball, it was hacked forward and young standoff Ezra Hinchliffe scored at the side of the posts. Mitchell’s kick made it 19-0 and visiting fullback James Marsden was yellow carded, having tugged on a home player’s shirt in his desperation to avoid another home score. After a spell under pressure, Heath made it four tries in 17 minutes when great counter-rucking on half-way earned them possession and Mitchell beat off one tackler and evaded a second to go behind the posts and leave himself with an easy conversion. Home flanker Dave Montgomery picked up a soft yellow card at a Dinnington tap penalty but the visitors were unable to take advantage of bountiful possession for the next minutes, their slow recycling making it easy for Heath’s enthusiastic tacklers. Once restored to 15 men, Heath were in again, on 32 minutes, courtesy of some slick handling and lovely support play. Mitchell started and finished a move from half-way, Hinchliffe and Baxendale providing the help, and the fullback added an excellent conversion for good measure to make it 33-0. Dinnington interrupted the one-way flow of points with a score of their own, Tom Shepherd rewarding strong forward play and standoff Chris Williams converting. However, Heath rounded of a remarkable first half scoring display following a lineout on half-way. Hinchliffe shot through like the proverbial muck off a shovel and burly centre Marty Moana bumped off three tacklers for a try converted by Mitchell. Almost inevitably the second half was an anti-climax for the home supporters. Dinnington monopolised possession and much of the play took place between the half-way line and the home 22. However, they were impotent in attack and Kevin Plant’s hosts were well organised in defence, the visitors not managing to get the ball over the try line until deep into added time at the end. Heath had to settle for one more converted try - a fine individual effort from Baxendale following Mitchell’s long pass on half-way after 51 minutes - and might have had two more but for referee Mike Ramsden. It was hard to disagree with the official’s decision to rule that Montgomery’s late pass to replacement Ollie Collinge was forward because the North Yorkshire official was perfectly placed. However, Heath had earlier been stunned when Simon Brown sauntered in behind the posts, only for the referee to rule out a score for a questionable obstruction on Dinnington flanker Matt Acres, who had no chance of stopping the home winger from getting the ball down. A non-plussed Brown was sin-binned shortly afterwards and there was a certain irony when Acres, who had somehow managed to avoid a yellow card after being at the centre of the game’s few flashpoints, forced his way under the posts for a late, late converted try.



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