League leaders make it ‘Fortress Mitford’
Morpeth RFC 57-14 York
League leaders Morpeth welcomed York to what is becoming Mitford Road fortress, with the spectators anticipating a cracking game following the exciting 16-16 draw when the two sides last met in York last November and they were not to be disappointed.
Morpeth started quickly got into their stride pushing in to York’s half with forwards and backs combining to repeatably power over the gain line. On five minutes Andrew Telford beat York’s defence with an incisive run, which is becoming his trademark, to score in the corner. 5-0 to Morpeth.
On eight minutes Morpeth were at it again, backs and forwards sharing the workload to give Alex Tait room to make a clean break into York’s 22 with Jake Jardine working hard to support and deservedly taking the pass from Tait to beat the last line of defence and score. Ben Hornby converted for 12-0.
Just two minutes laterOllie Dynan manoeuvred his way out of his own half with a run full of bristle and belligerence with the ball ending up in Johnny Ward’s hands 35 yards out and still plenty to do, which he did, scoring in the corner for 18-0.
At this point the crowd needed to draw breath from what was becoming an excellent display of 15 man rugby with accuracy from the home team. What must be encouraging for the coaches was that the whole team were contributing without exception. Forwards powerfully creating good ball for the ‘Fly boy’ backs to show their silky skills with Tait and Telford showing particularly strongly.
A Johnny Ward break from midfield ended up in Jack Elliott’s hands who sold an outrageous dummy to the full back before passing to the supporting Alex Tait who scored under the posts. Ben Hornby converted. Morpeth 25-0. Try bonus point achieved.
Barely had the kick off taken place before Morpeth were again knocking on the door of the oppositions defence and testing their resolve which they never lost throughout the game. A clever cross field kick by fly half Ben Hornby was gathered in the air by Alex Tait who stayed strong in the tackle long enough for the supporting Long to take the pass and score in the corner.
Just before half time York’s winger scored a classic try in the corner after taking a looping pass that beat the Morpeth defence.
The second half started as the first half did with Morpeth scoring very quickly with a strong run by Ollie Dynan who released a one handed pass out the back to the supporting ward to score in the corner. Hornby converted.
Morpeth were dominating the play at this stage with Long featuring particularly well in his all round game supported by his fellow forwards. There followed a further try with Ward and Dawson combining to put Telford over the try line with Hornby converting.
Morpeth were dominant in the few scrums that this game produced and it was one of these set pieces that the try of the game was achieved. Quick, crisp and accurate passing along the back line gave Jake Jardine the room to score. Simple but beautiful to watch.
There followed a period where York showed some real determination and possession to attack the Morpeth line and the home side showed as much resilience in defence as they had shown accuracy in attack.
Morpeth were not finished yet and a another accurate cross kick by Hornby was collected by Ward who scored in the corner and converted by Hornby. A second try by York concluded an excellent game for Morpeth, whoface Pocklington away on Saturday.