Match Report: Saturday 17 October 2015

Reported by Tomorgar
FINAL SCORE: North Ribblesdale RUFC 39 vs Heath RUFC 19

Heath don't turn up for 40 minutes.

Heath travelled to North Ribblesdale (Ribb) with two teams to take on Yorkshire One rivals who were looking for a hat-trick of victories. With their team as selected, Heath took to the field full of confidence but they were under the cosh from the start.

An early penalty for a high tackle allowed Ribb to go in front 3 mins into the game: 3 – 0. The hosts came back on the attack and again Heath were penalised (for holding on) but the easy opportunity to increase the lead was missed. Heath continued to struggle and come to terms with the pace of the game and after 12 mins conceded a try. The conversion was unsuccessful but the score read 8 – 0. Three minutes later, Ribb split the Heath defence open but the referee adjudged a forward pass when a try looked certain.

It was only a matter of time before Ribb tore through a defence that had gone ‘awol’ and they scored a try under the posts on 18 mins. With the conversion, Ribb led 15 – 0. Then, on 25 mins, Heath had no answer to the Ribb No.11 as he kicked through and gave chase for a converted try: 22 – 0. On the half hour, a penalty put them comfortably ahead at 25 – 0.

With newcomer Josh White on for Mark Puttick, Heath set foot in the Ribb 22 for the first time and sustained pressure nearly yielded a try. Chris Piper was injured in the attack and Olly Cook took his place. At a scrum 5m from the Ribb try line Heath gave away a penalty and the ball was cleared. Half time came with Ribb in full control after a very disappointing display from Heath.

Following advice from Coach Dave Harrison, Heath came out with all guns blazing. Ezra Hinchliffe kicked through and Callum Harriott-Brown dribbled the ball on to score an unconverted try. After 42 mins, Heath were on the scoreboard: 25 – 5. They continued to press but could not break down the defence and on 50 mins it was Ribb who were looking for another try. Olly Cook made two try-saving tackles but was injured in the process.

From the re-start, Ribb attacked and No.11 scored his hat-trick try. This bonus try and its conversion put Ribb 32 – 5 on 57 mins. Piper came back on for Rondene Johnson and on 65 mins Gareth Webb replaced Harriott-Brown who had been carrying an injury after scoring his try. On 70 mins, fly-half Sid Sales had to come off, forcing Johnson back on and a wholesale reorganisation of the team.

A series of penalties in Heath’s favour got Dom Walsh working hard for a score and on 72 mins Heath succeeded through Fergus Marsden’s try and Hinchliffe’s conversion: 32 – 12.

From the restart, Walsh, Crabtree and Hinchliffe combined well before Ramsden, White and then Webb created a chance for Baxendale to scrape in at the corner: 32 – 19 and still a few minutes left!

Ribb came back strongly despite the hard-working Heath pack and they had the last word with a converted try in the corner: 39 – 19.

This was a disappointing game for Heath who did not come to terms with the hard-running back row forwards of Ribb or their speedy backs who often found themselves in acres of space and with no shortage of options.

HEATH RUFC MATCH STATISTICS
Tries 3 Drop Goals 0
Penalty Tries 0 Penalty Goals 0
Conversions 2 Attendance 175
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