Rish went in to Saturdays game at home to Ilkley full of confidence from the narrow defeat last week at Yarnbury. Ilkley were the most dominant in the first half, going in to the break with a 21-7 lead. Rish turned the game around in the second period outscoring the visitors 24-9, culminating in a climactic last 10 minutes when Rish scored 2 tries, the last being the final play of the game and giving Rish a sensational 1 point victory.
As usual Rish fell behind early on and within 10 minutes were trailing by 2 converted tries. We settled in to the game and came close to scoring when Will McDonnell broke a couple of tackles before being dragged down close to the try line. Rish maintained a period of pressure and were rewarded when Richard Turner crashed over from close range. Joe Billing added the conversion.
Another excellent break by scrum half Liam Phillips was continued by Sam Bake but unfortunately his offload didn't go to hand. Ilkley increased their lead from a pushover scrum close to Rishies line which was converted.
A couple of minutes in to the half and Rishies fightback began in earnest. We started the half at a decent pace and after some crisp passing Joe Billing found the gap and raced over for the try which he duly converted. Ilkley came back with a penalty kick, but from a lineout on our 22 Sam Bake used his pace to break the defence and outpace the chasers to score. With a Billing conversion the score was 21-24. Ilkley increased their lead to 6 points with another well struck penalty, but the intensity continued. Tom Cockroft crossed the whitewash but was held up, and then Marcelo Pinto charged down the wing to score, but the referee, 50 metres away, disallowed the try! This was only one of many refereeing decisions that bafffled everyone in the ground.
To rub things in Ilkley were awarded another dubious penalty which was converted, and with less than 10 minutes to go the score had increased to 21v 30. Rishies had the belief that the game could still be won. Tom Cockroft made another good break before offloading to Kurt Sutcliffe who passed on to McDonnell, and with acres of space out wide, he sprinted in from inside the Rish half. The conversion went wide but the finale was to come. With minutes to go Ilkley had yet another penalty, but it hit the upright and Rish gathered the ball. The centre pairing of Sutcliffe and McDonnell combined again with the latter sending a well timed pass to winger Sam Puddephat, and the ball stuck! Sam then set off down the wing, came back inside, then outside, breaking tackles as he went, and dived over for the try and the victory, sending the ground in to hysterics.
An excellent, exciting and for most part, a frustrating game of rugby, with both sides managing to play in good spirit in spite of plenty of dubious decisions. Coaches were impressed with the intensity from the Rish players, giving their all for the full 80 minutes, and having the tenacity to snatch the remarkable victory.
Tries: Richard Turner, Joe Billing, Will McDonnell, Sam Bake, Sam Puddephat
Cons: Joe Billing (3)
|1. G Semple||2.L Illingworth||3. A Sykes|
|6.T Muscat-Baron||7. T Jowle|
|4. J McHugh||5. T Cockroft T|
|8. S Rawnsley|
|9. C Cowey|
|10. K Sutcliffe C|
|13. W McDonnell T|
|11. B Rooney||14. W Illingworth|
|15. L Phillips|
|Subs||A Khan||B Ashton||P Savage||J Whiteley T|
Rishworthians v Selby Slideshow.
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