Workington v 1XV 18 September 2021

Workington 0 – Hawcoat Park 12

A patched up Maroon and Whites made the difficult trip up the coast to take on the Workington Zebras.

As to be expected after the grim journey it was the big Workington pack who started best and for the first 10mins or so our defence had to be strong. Returning hooker Adam Grainger put in some big hits and was well supported by Mike Lightfoot and Rory Sayle along with the rest of the pack. The Workington fly half just missed a 35 metre penalty goal attempt during this period.
Once we got the journey out of our legs we slowly got into the game. The platform was set again by a dominant scrum which continued for the remainder of the game. The front three of props Scott Dobbie Andy Kent and Grainger well supported in the engine room by Chris Thompson and debutant Paul Rushton deserve special praise for their efforts playing in the recognised less glamorous positions in our team sport. Kent had taken a knock and bravely tried to play a part and when off the pitch Paul Woodburn replaced him and put in his usual solid performance.
15 mins in we scored our first try not surprisingly resulting from a push over. Outstanding No 8 Grady Slater home from Glasgow after recently qualifying as a Doctor getting the final touchdown 0 – 5.
Soon after we extended our lead again from a scrum this time scrum half Brad Morrow helping out in not his preferred position moved the ball out wide centres Dan Lightfoot and Chris Burns combined well before Burns made a good clean break to pass to supporting skipper for the day Will Coles to score and convert his own try. 0- 12.
It was Workington who finished the half the best. Trying to take the scrum out of the game they quickened play including quick tap options to run the ball at us. Also making use of the big playing surface their fly half attempted a few cross kicks which full back Benji Platt and debutant Cory Morgan playing out of position on the wing did well to defend this bombardment. Again, our defence had to work hard to keep the score 0 – 12 at half time.
With their coach’s words ringing in their ears it was Workington who started the second half strongest however whilst the majority of the play was in our half, we always had control of the game through a workmanlike team effort. Injuries to Paul Rushton and then later the industrious Grainger meant changes were needed up front, but A team skipper Pete Jennens came on and put in a good shift with pack leader Mike Lightfoot leading from the front in rallying his troops. Brad Morrow was awarded our man of match and his forward experience was useful in controlling our play from scrum half along with fly half Will Coles.
Towards the end there was a special moment for the McArthur family. Morgan came on to make his first team debut followed soon after by Dad Steve the former first team scrum half stalwart turning back the years. A father and son combination playing first team is rare and both can feel very proud of their place in our club history.
Final score 0 – 12.
Never an easy place to gain a win up at Workington and also keep them scoreless on their big open pitch so a great team effort from all involved in the maroon and white squad.
A mention also for Millom based ref Paddy Loughran who as usual controlled the game in a sensible manner.

John Horne

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