Bradford & Bingley 5-29 Morpeth RFC
What an impressive win this was against a side that up to the Christmas break had been one of the front runners in terms of league results.
This outstanding performance elevates Morpeth to second place and just as importantly creates a significant gap between the top 3 sides and the remainder of the league.
What is more, next week sees the visit of Scarborough to Mitford Road who currently occupy top place.
It is a mouth-watering clash and in terms of final league placings could well be a crucial encounter.
On a good playing surface Morpeth took the field and began the match playing against a strong wind blowing directly down the pitch.
The majority of the first half saw Morpeth play in an exceptionally well organised manner, defending well, taking opportunities as they came along and not giving away penalties. It wasn’t until the 38th minute when the first score came on the board when Ben Hornby converted a penalty 3-0 Morpeth.
Then the Mitford Road side scored a crucial try just before halftime instigated by scrum half Elliott who made an initial break, then with a real hint of a forward pass, fed Hornby who went in under the posts.
Hornby had his conversion attempt charged down as he tried to counter the wind placing the ball too close to the opposition.
The halt-time score was 8-0 to Morpeth and the second half saw BB come right back into the match and some good consistent pressure produced an unconverted try 10 minutes into the second half. to make it 8-5.
But Morpeth lack nothing if not an excellent spirit in the side led by skipper Hill and although a couple of penalty opportunities were missed the decisions behind were correctly thought through keeping the team in the right area of the pitch and subsequently justified on 63 minutes Cole Wilson made a storming rumbling run, which saw the effervescent Elliott in support yet again to go over for a try that Hornby converted for a 15-5 lead.
Then on 69 minutes Telford got on the end of some direct play for a try which Hornby again converted for 22-5.
Finally, as BB continued to play with both spirit and enterprise Jonny Ward intercepted on the opposition 10 metre line to run in unopposed for Hornby to add the conversion for a final score of 5-29.
There were too many excellent performances to award an individual man of the match, however, mention to two of the most consistently reliable club members James ‘Beefy’ Armstrong and Andy Shippen who both greatly contributed to this result.