1st XV won 41 – 12 at home to Malton & Norton. Match report thanks to Walter Ritchie:
What a promising start to the season with a comprehensive win in an entertaining game which produced 9 tries. The pitch was in a picture of health due to amazing care from the volunteer band of dedicated members. Alnwick had commented that our training pitch was in better condition than their first team pitch!!
Northern started well and were soon a try up with Ali Gray (who was in fine form) scoring after 8 minutes. This was quickly followed by a try by captain, Alex Clark with the conversion by Donal Collins putting Northern 12 points up. Malton, now with their travel legs moving, put pressure on the home team by keeping the ball in hand and hardly ever kicking but Northern’s defence, allied to the fact they seemed to more aware of the law changes to the tackle area than Malton, kept the visitors at bay until the 25th minute when they scored an unconverted try out wide. Donal Collins had a chance to extend the lead right on half time with a long range penalty that just faded wide leaving the half time score 12 – 5 to the home team.
Northern, after being under pressure for the remainder of the first half, began the second half on the offensive with Alex Clark scoring his second try converted by Donal Collins. Malton responded with a converted try of their own but after sustained Northern pressure the visitors, who after frequent transgressions at a Northern 5 metre scrum had their replacement flanker yellow carded when a penalty try could have been awarded. Northern immediately took advantage of this by taking the penalty scrum option with no. 8 Chalky White forcing his way over for the bonus point try. Malton responded taking the ball into the Northern 22 but a great tackle by new boy Tom Burt forced the ball clear. Alex Clark gathered the loose ball and showed great skill to cross kick as he was being tackled into touch. Dan Mathews outpaced the cover defence to collect the kick and sprint in from half way to score under the posts. Donal Collins converted and from the restart, the ball was worked left to Harrison Clark who finished with a try out wide after a strong run. Northern continued to press a tiring Malton team and Ali Gray was on the end of some delightful interpassing to score Northern’s 7th try to seal an impressive win.
Next Saturday we travel to Percy Park, our very, very old rivals and all support will be most welcome.