Woodhouse 20 Hamians 23
Hamians travelled to near neighbours Woodhouse Giants on saturday to face the only team below them in the table. With both teams fancying their chances, it promised to be an exciting game and it didn't disapoint
Hamians opened the scoring when makeshift winger Marshall produced a wonderful offload, to Big T who powered over the line dragging a couple of defenders with him. The conversion was missed, but Hamains led 5-0. That soon became 8-0 when Nixon slotted a penalty deep in Woodhouse territory after an infrigement at the ruck. With their tails up Hamains looked to exploit space out wide, but instead of the pass finding a purple shirt it was intercepted by the Woodhouse winger, who juggled the ball, before gathering to score in the corner, and Woodhouse were back in the game at 8-5.
Hamians, continued to make good progress both through the middle, and outwide, and soon had another try to celebrate as a swift handling move took the ball from a lineout on the right, to Tom Leavy's hands on the left wing, where the elusive centre stepped two defenders to score, and extend the lead to 13-5. Hamians continued to press and from one of Nixon's precision kicks to the corner, the ball bobbled around 10m from the Giants line. Quick thinking Jarman was the quickest to react, as he gathered the ball and scooted over to take the lead out to 18-5, just before half time.
At half-time the Hamians camp were pleased with the performance, and called for more of the same, but Woodhouse had other ideas as a newly fired up up team reacted to a loose ball in their own 22, to race 80m to score in the corner, and a comeback looked like it could be on the cards. That seemed to be more of a reality when they scored another try from distance after getting quick ball at a ruck, and beating the defence before it was set. A long-range penalty shortly afterwards put Woodhouse ahead for the first time, with just 10 minutes remaining. Some teams may have let their heads drop, but this Hamians team is made of stern stuff, and never gives up. The team continued to play the way they had throughout the game, and refused to panic. Their patience was rewarded with 2 minutes to go when Big T picked up the ball from the back of the scrum, and powered over in the corner. The conversion was missed, but Hamians were able to see out a 23-20 win, gaining a bonus point in the process. Vice captain Nixon took home the man of the match award, though in reality, there were 14 others in contention after a really valiant team effort.
Tries: Big T x2, T.Leavy, Jarman