A loss, but score-line doesn't reflect Heath's performance.
Heath U15’s vs Dinnington
On the No.2 pitch in front of the clubhouse Heath under 15’s second home match of the season saw them up against a large mobile Dinnington side.
Dinnington kicked off playing right to left towards the No.1 pitch and were immediately on attack. Heath had a lot of defending to do in the first few minutes and a big tackle from Adam Ayub and Saul Marson early on demonstrated their intention to match the visitors physicality. However, despite the efforts of the Heath side Dinnington took the lead 5-0 after four minutes with an unconverted try in the corner.
The early try did not unsettle Heath who won the ball back from their own kick off and with good ball retention worked their way into the opposition 22. Despite having a smaller pack the Heath front row of Jack Mollet, Ben Kershaw and Alex Crystal weren’t backing down at scrum time but at the 9 minute mark the Dinnington pack won a scrum against the feed and attacked down the left hand side with an excellent tackle into touch from Adam Ayub giving Heath the lineout. From the lineout the Heath pack drove back into the opposition 22 only to see possession turned over. Dinnington then moved the ball through the backs only to be halted again by a committed Heath defence. Excellent tackling from the loose forward trio of Saul Marson, Nathan Baldwyn and Isaac Shaw and centres Dillon Hilton and Max Rowntree Heath brought a halt to many opposition moves and with strong running from Isaac Shaw, Lewis Dow and Toby Laurie in the forwards ensured that Heath were regularly testing the Dinnington defence.
At the 12 minute mark a marauding Toby Laurie run into the opposition 22 resulted in a penalty to Heath. Captain Ben Gianotti kicked to touch and from the lineout 5 metres out the Heath forwards drove towards the Dinnington try line only to be denied by some desperate defending. Heath stayed in the opposition 22 for a period varying their attack, running wide through the centres and back three of Adam Ayub, Sam McIntyre and Owen Simpson with the continued pressure leading to the opposition penalised at the breakdown. Again Heath kicked for the corner with Dinningtons defence again denying Heath the scoring opportunity.
The visitors then broke free with only desperate cover tackling from Dillon Hilton and Sam McIntyre slowing their progress. At 18 minutes the visitors were finally able to break down Heaths committed defence to score out wide to lead 10-0.
Heath again regained possession from the kick off and worked their way towards the opposition 22 wining a scrum midfield. George Barton sent the ball wide to Owen Simpson and Sam McIntyre where a penalty was won just outside the visitors 22. Again Heath kicked to touch and from the lineout ran wide trying to penetrate the oppositions defensive line without success. From the next scrum Dinnington ran the ball down the left hand touchline with Adam Ayub again tackling well to halt the move. Robbie Abbott then came on at loose forward for the injured Saul Marson and with fresh legs had an immediate impact with ball and on defence.
The larger Dinnington side got a break through the middle of the park and finished off a good move to score near the posts just before half time to lead 17-0 at the break.
Having the benefit of a large bench Coach Jordan Bradbrook made substitutions at half time bringing Finlay Verry, Andrew Coates and Zach Herman on for Jack Mollet, Lewis Dow and Nathan Baldwyn. Andrew Coates made an immediate impact with the ball and a huge tackle on one of the Dinnington forwards again demonstrating the level of commitment the Heath side had brought.
A Dillon Hilton run from his own 22 was halted well inside the visitors half and showed that although Heath were still prepared to run and take opportunities where possible, but within 8 minutes of the restart Dinnington had increased their lead to 27-0. More changes were made with Saul Marson and Jack Mollet returning and Seb Wood-Ives and Fred Drake coming on at Wing and in the pack respectively.
Dinnington started to build confidence and points but Heath showed spirit throughout, tackled well and ran the ball whenever the opportunity arose.
The final score did not truly reflect the performance of Heath, especially in the first half when they were unlucky not to get on the scoreboard on a few occasions.
In a match where the performance of all 22 players was much improved and showed excellent progress both in skill and commitment, the tough decision of naming a Man of the Match was finally arrived at.
Man of the Match: Sam McIntyre.
Heath 0 – 42 Dinnington
Starting XV Substitutes
1 Alex Crystal Zack Herman
2 Ben Kershaw Robbie Abbott
3 Jack Mollet Finlay Verry
4 Toby Laurie Fred Drake
5 Lewis Dow Seb Wood-Ives
6 Saul Marson Andrew Coates
7 Nathan Baldwyn
8 Isaac Shaw
9 George Barton
10 Ben Gianotti (c)
11 Sam McIntyre
12 Dillon Hilton
13 Max Rowntree
14 Adam Ayub
15 Owen Simpson