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1st XV - Match centre

Vale of Lune
Wirral
Penalties
D Harvey (2)
Penalty Try
Sat 8 Dec 14:15 - Northern Division - North Premier Full time

An Away Win at Last!

Wirral beat Vale of Lune by the narrowest of margins to record their first away win of the season.

The comments re last week’s game remain pertinent with the final outcome in doubt until the final whistle in the gloom when it was difficult to distinguish one side from another.
We set off from Clatterbridge in fine weather, although I appreciate the rain made an appearance later in the morning but it was apparent when we got to Lancaster that it had not stopped raining there for some time.
Again Wirral had to make a number of changes, DAN LIGHT continued to stand in for JACK YARKER, ROB PEARL was unavailable so MATT DALTON came back into the back row, Paul Lewis joined Ryan Stead in the second row with James Reeve moving to No 8. In the backs, BEN BROOKS and CHRIS SPEED were unavailable due to a family wedding and injury respectively and their places were taken by James Adams and John Harris. Tom Parry was captain for the day. The subs were Mike Warren, Chris Hughes and HAYDEN LONG (who has returned back to rugby and had had a couple of games in the seconds).
Wirral kicked off against a strong breeze but unfortunately this did not go the required 10 metres, which immediately put Wirral under pressure and play was soon concentrated outside the 20m area. In the 2nd minute VOL had the opportunity to take the lead with a penalty from 25m out but this was missed to the right. For the next few minutes all the possession was with VOL but the Wirral defence was holding out until the VOL centre, Jordan Dorrington split the defence and raced in unopposed from 60m out to score with the try being converted by Darren Hall. 7-0 (13 mins). As with previous matches, Wirral gradually worked their way into the game and made progress up field and after 20minutes were awarded a penalty in front of the VOL posts and DAN HARVEY converted, 7-3.
Despite the weather both teams had good passages of play with numerous phases but territory gains were not great. VOL were pressing some 30m out when their move was intercepted by Paul Lewis who was shocked to see the try line some 70m ahead but was gradually caught and the pass to the eventual support went astray. Play was now being concentrated in mid field with VOL reluctant to use the wind relying on their backs to make breaks. On 28 and 36 minutes Wirral had penalty opportunities but both missed in the heavy conditions where the rain was incessant. On 35 minutes Chris Hughes came on for DAN LIGHT (calf injury). On 38 minutes VOL were denied a try (forward pass) but in the last play before half time a break some 60m out by VOL left them with a 3 on 1 overlap situation and Olly Jacques scored some 10m from the posts but the conversion was missed, which would turn out to be important when viewed against the final score line. 12-3 at half time.
During the break we were wondering if the light would hold out as it was quite difficult to see across the pitch and 10 minutes was taken for the break with Wirral out waiting for the VOL team to appear. The game restarted and immediately VOL were into their stride with another potential try disallowed for a forward pass. On 50 minutes, two substitutions made HAYDEN LONG and Mike Warren came on for Paul Lewis and John Harris (injured). A break by Chris Crowley brought play down into the VOL 20m area where the release of the ball was delayed by VOL flanker, Sam Wallbank which led to a yellow card, from the resultant penalty DAN HARVEY reduced the arrears to 12-6 (53 minutes). 5 minutes later, Sam Broadbent was sin binned for what was presumed to be a high tackle and the third yellow card was issued 2 minutes later against the VOL fly half, Ben Dorrington. By this stage the pale sun had come from behind the clouds and one could view the game easier. The Wirral forwards were holding an advantage over their opposite numbers. Another half break by Chris Crowley to 35m out where he kicked forward and appeared to be late tackled however the ball was taken by VOL in front of the posts but the Wirral chasers pinned the opposition in front of the posts and eventually a penalty in Wirral’s favour and given that the VOL pack were one down, Wirral took the option of a scrum. The scrum was taken and the Wirral pack pushed VOL back and it led to them conceding a penalty try, 12-13 (65 minutes).
The Wirral were now on top and not allowing VOL to make the territorial gains and were counter attacking and now making yardage, with time ebbing away Wirral were controlling the ball for a number of phases whilst any possession gained by VOL they were looking to spread wide in the hope of making ground into the Wirral half. A steal at the line out by Tom Parry enabled him to gain some 30m downfield before being held. John Harris came on for Chris Crowley and then the forwards controlled the final 4 minutes by pick and go until the final relieving whistle was made. A very hard won victory but the team showed great resilience to bounce back from that half time deficit to enable them to move up to 6th in the league. They will need to be more clinical next week against league leaders Hull when hopefully some of the injured players will be available for selection.
Richard McNeil

Quilter Kids First Champions winner – November: Hinckley RFC

Key moments

20:00
Penalty Danny Harvey kicks a penalty for Wirral
46:00
Penalty Danny Harvey kicks a penalty for Wirral

Highlights

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78:00 Sub Off
Chris Crowley is substituted off for Wirral
78:00 Sub On
John Harris is substituted on for Wirral
65:00 Penalty Try
Penalty try awarded to Wirral
50:00 Sub Off
John Harris is substituted off for Wirral
50:00 Sub On
Mike Warren is substituted on for Wirral
50:00 Sub Off
Paul Lewis is substituted off for Wirral
50:00 Sub On
Substitution on for Wirral
46:00 Penalty 0 - 6
Danny Harvey kicks a penalty for Wirral
End of period 1
36:00 Sub On
Chris Hughes is substituted on for Wirral
36:00 Sub Off
Danny Light is substituted off for Wirral
20:00 Penalty 0 - 3
Danny Harvey kicks a penalty for Wirral
Start of the game
Replay game

As it happened

  • Vale of Lune
  • Wirral
  • 0
  • Danny Harvey Penalty 20:00'
  • Danny Light Sub Off 36:00'
  • Chris Hughes Sub On 36:00'
  • Danny Harvey Penalty 46:00'
  • John Harris Sub Off 50:00'
  • Mike Warren Sub On 50:00'
  • Paul Lewis Sub Off 50:00'
  • Sub On 50:00'
  • Penalty Try 65:00'
  • Chris Crowley Sub Off 78:00'
  • John Harris Sub On 78:00'

Team selection

Team selection has not been published for this fixture yet.

League round up

Other North Premier results

Hull
49
7
Ilkley
17
24
Kirkby Lonsdale
0
36
Blaydon
Lymm
7
6

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League table

# Team Pl Pts
1. Hull 13 59
2. Billingham 13 50
3. Blaydon 13 48
4. Rossendale 13 44
5. Harrogate 13 43
6. Wirral 13 36
7. Sandal 13 36

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