Kirby Lonsdale vs Harrogate
By Peter Kitching
During a competitive first half, Harrogate’s superior skill and strength gradually manifested itself to put them 12-14 ahead at the interval.
They then moved up several gears and, after 20 minutes, had raced into a 12-28 lead. A serious injury to KL winger, Harry Ralston, then held play up for 15 minutes but the visitors’ pressure was unrelenting and they scored two more converted tries to make it 12-42 with ten minutes remaining. Showing great team spirit, KL continued to attack at every opportunity and scored twice during this period.
An early Jonny Coser run led to quick ball being released to Nathan Wyman who broke incisively and chipped ahead cleverly for Luke Riddell to score the opening try, converted by Wyman. A Harrogate touchline fumble then lost them possession and Kl counter attacked strongly. Second Row, James Thompson supported the move to score. This made it 5-7 and, though Harrogate’s forward domination kept them in control, KL continued to attack at every opportunity. An excellent KL backs move put Ralston into space for a try converted by Mike Fearon and they were 12-7 ahead.
The powerful Harrogate pack was exerting more and more control with the front row of Tom Driscoll, Aarin Yorke and Connor Ward absolutely dominant. When substitute, Steve Maycock came off the bench, the pressure continued. Sam Brady and Luke Watts were a powerful second row combination and, when Watts had to retire with a rib injury, Martin Dodds moved up from flanker to add his all action brand of rugby to the front five. This brought veteran flanker, Tim Heaton off the bench to unite with Coser and the dynamic Hugo Tasker to form a really good back row.
The Harrogate scrum pressure had to tell as they forced the KL pack into conceding a stream of penalties. Repeated driving mauls followed and Yorke squeezed through a mass of bodies for a converted try to regain Harrogate’s lead. The half ended with scrum half Danny Matthews racing back to retrieve a KL attacking kick and setting up a counter attack from deep. A spectacular Andrew Lawson try seemed to be on the cards but he was narrowly forced into touch.
From the restart, Harrogate pressurised a KL scrum and Matthews dispossessed his opposite number, Ben Walker. His break was well supported by Harry Barnard and Riddell, forcing the home defence to conceded a penalty. This led to an attacking line out but an atypical “cock up” gave KL possession. However, Harrogate won a quick turnover and the ball was spread for Riddell to sprint through for a converted try.
Still more Harrogate attacks followed with forwards and backs linking well. A well controlled 20 metres driving maul took play to KL’s goal line and Matthews picked up and dummied his way through for the bonus point winning converted try. The unfortunate injury to KL’s Ralston was the next major incident and he was stretchered off after a lengthy delay and with everybody’s good wishes.
Matthews and Barnard again combined well to launch the next try scoring attack. The ball eventually went loose in midfield but Wyman gathered it off his bootlaces to completely outstrip the defence and score another converted try. A powerful Heaton midfield break set up still more Harrogate pressure but a knock on ended the move and gave KL a scrum. However, powerful Harrogate scrummaging drove KL off their own ball and Maycock scored Harrogate’s final converted try. This conversion made it six out of six for Wyman and two of them were from the touchline. He was given the “Man of the Match” award in the Clubhouse and then proceeded to win the “boat race” against a KL prop. Quite a day for him.
The game didn’t end there as KL never gave up and scored two well deserved consolation tries in the last ten minutes. From a midfield turnover, centre Dave Barton sped clear to score a converted try and, in the dying moments, Fearon touched down to make the final score 24-42
Kirkby Lonsdale: Terry, Ralston, Pickthall, Barton, Huddleston, Fearon, Walker, Briggs, Armistead, Schiller, Galbraith, Thompson, Sheridan, Storey, Barker. Subs:- Law, Brown, Armstrong
Harrogate: Rossillo, Barnard, Wyman, Riddell, Lawson, Fox, Matthews, Driscoll, Yorke, Ward, Watts, Brady, Dodds, Tasker, Coser. Subs:- Maycock, Heaton, Cookland
Referee: Michael Hurdley (Northern Division)
Match report by Bill Barrack
Update on Harry Ralston’s Injury from his head coach.
Just a quick update re Harry, he had his ankle put back in place on the Saturday after arriving at hospital, he then had an operation on Sunday afternoon to pin his Fibula mid way up his leg and then pinned lower down his Fibula near his ankle.
He is currently in a double cast and is none weight bearing for 6 weeks and all being well should then move to an air cast boot. He’s in reasonable spirits considering but he’s lucky to have a strong friendship group around the club to help him out
Thanks for your concern and I shall look forward to heading across to you guys come next season.
All the best for the remaining games,