Merseysiders show Morpeth Ladies no mercy

Morpeth's Kate Hall (in green) makes a tackle.
Morpeth's Kate Hall (in green) makes a tackle.
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Morpeth Ladies 5 Birkenhead Park Ladies 17 RFUW Championship North Two

MORPETH Ladies were looking to move back up the league with the table-topping Birkenhead Park making the long trip northwards.

The visitors had the majority of the play in the first 15 minutes and the Mitford Road ladies were forced to defend for long periods of the game.

Morpeth were forced to make a very early change after some strong rucking from Birkenhead caused Gilmartin to leave the field with a large egg appearing above a cut on her eye. This brought Parkinson on to the field in the front row.

Even though Best had a 10-minute break in the sin bin for an off-the-ball incident and Parkinson went off with a chest injury, the away side could not capitalise as they missed two penalties.

And the first half drew to a close in dramatic fashion with Best back on the pitch and able to distribute the ball from a drop-out to the flying Severs, who broke a couple of would-be tacklers to race to the try-line from inside her own half.

The conversion was missed but Morpeth held a surprising 5-0 lead at half time.

Birkenhead kept pressing against the 14 Morpeth players in the second half and they finally got their reward after some clever offloading in the tackle created space for Akers to break through a last-ditch tackle and level the scores after 65 minutes.

And six minutes later, Whitehead raced away from the covering defence and scored near the posts. A successful conversion made it 5-12.

Gilmartin returned to the field to the surprise of team mates and coaches alike to level the players up and the home side worked their way into the Birkenhead 22 in the last minute.

But strong defence from the visitors forced the turnover and Neale was able to break away to score from 40 meters to seal the win for Birkenhead.