Match Report: Saturday 9 February 2019

Reported by Thomas Stanley Walton
FINAL SCORE: Heath RUFC 32 vs Beverley 34

LOSING BONUS POINTS SECURED IN THRILLING GAME

 

Selection 15 Jack Crabtree  14 Luke Saltonstall  13 Isiaha Spooner  12 Ezra  Hinchliffe  11 Callum Harriett-Brown  10 Dan Cole  9 Michael Reynolds  1 Alex McFadden  2 Jonny Cole  3  Chris Moore  4 Matt Beasty  5 Alex Patrick  6 Fergus  Marsden  7 Jason Merrie  8 Richard Brown  16 Chris Robinson  17 Seife Boussadda  18  Chris Piper

Coach Dave Harrison shuffled his side around as he looked to add some spice to the team as Heath entertained Beverley in a crucial Yorkshire 1 game at North Dean. In the pack Jonny Cole moved to hooker with Alex McFadden starting at loose head prop. Alex Patrick retained his position in the second row with Fergus Marsden moving to blind side flanker. Luke Saltonstall had a first start to the season on the wing whilst on the bench was another new face as Chris Robinson, who has been playing well in the seconds, sat alongside Seife Boussadda and Chris Piper.

Heath had the worst possible start as they conceded a converted try in the opening minutes when Beverley who received the ball from kick off set off to drive into the home defence before finding touch with a clever kick. From the resulting line-out the visitors won the ball and drove forwards before centre Will Greenwood snatched the ball and went over under the posts. Phil Duboulay added the extras and a score of 7-0 with 2 minutes on the clock. Heaths response was immediate as Ezra Hinchliffe converted a penalty to reduce the arrears 7-3 and as Heath re-grouped they kept the pressure on scoring a try on 12 minutes to take the lead. Dan Cole had set up an attack with a clever kick and when Alex McFadden got hold of the ball he drove forwards to the visitors try-line. The supporting Jonny Cole made further yardage and then up popped Alex Patrick to score his first try for the club, converted by Hinchliffe and Heath led 10-7. Beverley came straight back and pulled level with a penalty from Duboulay on 15 minutes but Heath responded with a try. Excellent work from Jonny Cole and Richard Brown released Jason Merrie who drove forwards and then slipped a pass to the supporting Callum Harriett-Brown who went in for an unconverted try and Heath had the lead back 15-10 with 17 minutes on the clock. The game was fast and open but a defensive lapse from Heath on 27 minutes enabled Beverleys Rob Smith to breeze under the posts for a try with Duboulay adding the extras and re-take the lead 17-15. Chris Piper and Seife Boussadda came on to replace Matt Beasty and Jonny Cole as Heath went in search of regaining the lead. Luke Saltonstall and Harriett-Brown had probing runs and Chris Moore and Piper drove into the Beverley attack and it came as no surprise to see Heath awarded a penalty, which Hinchliffe converted, and a half time score of 18-17 to the hosts.

It had been an enthralling first half but in a 15 minute spell at the start of the second half Heath crumbled and conceded seventeen points as Beverley ran riot. An early penalty from Duboulay followed by converted tries from James Graham and Jack Foster enabled Beverley to lead 34-18 after 55minutes and Heath looked dead and buried. Jonny Cole and Chris Robinson came on for Fergus Marsden and Luke Saltonstall as Heath looked to try and get back into the game and from a line out ball Boussadda snatched the ball and drove over for a try, converted by Hinchliffe, which reduced the arrears, 25-34 on 58 minutes and it was game  on. Heath became encamped in the Beverley half as Spooner and Brown went close to scoring but time was passing as Beverley clung on. However, following a superb passing movement from Heath Harriett-Brown was on hand to score his second try of the game, converted by Hinchliffe and a score of 32-34 with 5 minutes remaining the game was still not decided. Heath continued to attack and an attempted drop kick from Ezra Hinchliffe went wide as the clock wound down and Beverley had succeeded in gaining a great win to maintain their unbeaten run in 2019. The win moves Beverley up to fourth place with Heath maintaining second spot by gaining 2 bonus points as they prepare to visit Hullensians next week.

Ian Rushworth was at the game, reporting for the Courier. Read his write-up, here:  https://www.halifaxcourier.co.uk/sport/more-sport/beverley-edge-out-heath-in-thriller-1-9586151

HEATH RUFC MATCH STATISTICS
Tries 4 Drop Goals 0
Penalty Tries 0 Penalty Goals 2
Conversions 3 Attendance 150
Click any image to enlarge