Match Report
Heath RUFC (13) vs Roundhegians Club (17)
Saturday 7 January 2017
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Good game, near miss.

Reporter: Spud Taylor
Dated: 7 January 2017
Heath 3rd xv started the new year with a home game against Roundhegians 2nd xv at West Vale on a dry, mild winters afternoon. They even had the luxury of 2 replacements. Roudhegians monopolised early possession and it was no surprise when they took the lead after 5 minutes when the big number 8 forced his way over from a scrum some 15 metres from the Heath try line. The conversion was missed. 0 – 5. After 7-8 minutes Heath started to gain possession but made mistakes giving the ball back to the opposition. As the half progressed, they began to look more reassured and were causing Roundhegians problems. After 18 minutes, flanker Johnny SIDEBOTTOM left the field to be replaced by Eric BLACKMORE. The game settled down and was a very even contest. After 28 minutes, Heath took the lead with a well – taken converted try. Centre Gareth WEBB took a quick tap from a penalty on the Roundhegians 10 metres line. When he was tackled, he passed the ball to the supporting outside half, Marty MOANA who made good ground deep into the opposition ‘22’. When he was stopped, he passed the ball inside to flanker, James WHITWORTH, who skipped between the posts for a try converted by Gareth WEBB. 7 – 5. After 23 minutes, scrum half Michael DODD was replaced by Callum BULL who went onto the wing with Kyle ADAMSON moving to ‘9’. Shortly afterwards, prop Roger HAMMOND left the field with a hamstring injury to be replaced by Johnny SIDEBOTTOM. The scrums then became uncontested. After 39 minutes, Heath came up with their best move of the half. Marty MOANA got the ball from a scrum just outside the home ‘22’, centre and skipper for the day, Chris O’CONNOR, made an excellent dummy run and the ball was passed to fellow centre Gareth WEBB who went on a mazy 50 metres run to just outside the Roundhegians ‘22’. He passed inside to supporting full back, Matthew COOK. He was tackled and after a couple of quick recycled balls, Gareth WEBB chipped to the left hand corner where James WHITWORTH just knocked on before planting the ball over the try line. Half time: Heath 7 v 5 Roundhegians Heath were quick out of the blocks at the start of the second half and put pressure on the Roundhegians line which held firm. From a ruck inside the Roundhegians ‘22’, James WHITWORTH went blind and looked like a certain scorer before being well tackled. The ball was passed inside but knocked on and the chance was gone. James then left the field with an ankle injury to be replaced by DODDY. Roundhegians came back strongly and they spent a good 8 – 10 minutes in the Heath ‘22’ but the defence was excellent and Heath eventually cleared their lines. After 66 minutes, Heath increased their lead with a penalty from Gareth WEBB. 10 – 5. Roundhegians came straight back at Heath and after a period of pressure they eventually crossed in the corner. The conversion was wide. 10 – 10. Heath looked like making a quick response to this setback when Marty MOANA found Chris O’CONNOR who ran an excellent line. He made 20 metres before passing outside. Unfortunately the pass was dropped and Roundhegians were able to clear. After 74 minutes, Heath were awarded a penalty in the Roundhegians ‘22’ and Gareth WEBB made no mistake with the kick. 13 – 10. Roundhegians had chance to draw level when they were awarded kickable penalty inside the Heath ‘22’. However, the kick went wide and the lead was maintained. Roundhegians continued to exert pressure on the home defence and after 78 minutes they passed the ball down the line and a back made a break and scored under the posts. The try was converted. 13 – 17. Heath showed excellent commitment and endeavour as they came straight back at their opponents. They got inside the Roundhegians ‘22’ and were awarded an attacking scrum about 15 metres out from the line. Number 8 Mark WARRENDER picked up at the base of the scrum and broke the gain line. The ball was recycled and both DODDY and Nick SZADBY attempted to force their way over the line but they were stopped just short of the try line. The ball came out to the backs and it was passed to the right. Matthew COOK entered the line and passed out to right winger, Jason BAXTER, who was 8-9 metres short of the line. He sprinted for the corner but was bundled into touch a metre from the try line. Referee Colin TOVEY then blew the whistle for ‘No side’. Final score: Heath 13 v 17 Roundhegians. This was an excellent game of rugby played by two very evenly matched, committed sides in a very good spirit. The Heath lads showed tremendous effort throughout the game and their defence was outstanding when under pressure for periods particularly in the second half. Onwards and upwards!!



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