On Saturday Trafford MV welcomed Aspull to MacPherson Park for a crucial game at the top of the ADM Lancashire Championship with MV defending their top spot placing.
The weather was very bright and feeling cold with a strong diagonal wind blew deep into the Clubhouse corner.
A tough game was on the cards after Trafford took the honours 19-21 in the away game back in October and so it proved to be.
The game kicked off with both sides very competitive and early pressure from MV brought a penalty attempt which was completed by Aaron Booth to start the scoreboard turning over at 3-0. The lead was short lived as Aspull moved ball through hands to score wide on the left 3 – 5 to Aspull.
Both sets of supporters were being kept on their toes as the lead swapped again with MV forcing another penalty for Booth to convert 6-5 to MV.
Aspull were proving very competitive and had confidence in running the ball out of defence and their handling and running brought 2 quick tries, both converted, which had Trafford MV worried as the score hit 6 – 19.
Trafford needed a reaction and it was stand off Aaron Booth, on a run of good form, that snatched his opportunity by splitting the Aspull defence and racing to a touchdown close to the post, but tweeking a hamstring in the process. Pat Eccles converted the try to bring the game to its half time break at 13 – 19 to Aspull.
MV looked to increase their pressure play in the second half with Kieran Edgar making his league debut playing well, Andrew Clegg worked well in the lineout and scrum and Nathan Hamilton impressed with strong hard running in the centre.
Jack Gobbett showed commitment as he played through the second half regularly being treated for a bloodied nose. Jamie Kingdon kept up his scoring run with an early try after breaking the Aspull defensive line, Pat Eccles converted to nudge MV just in front at 20 – 19.
Aspull were proving a constant test for MV and if anything Trafford need to have a much stronger, destructive defensive pattern. Both sides battled hard through the second half with MV struggling to hold onto their narrow advantage whilst the challengers could see the prospect of a win in their sight.
It was Aspull that grasped the initiative stretching MV’s defence and getting the ball out wide on the fringes and a late try was converted to secure the away win and also a bonus point win which took them back onto the top of the ADM Championship with a 3 point lead and a game in hand over MV.
The final score of 20 – 26 was a fair reflection on the game and it is now all down to Trafford MV to come back with determination, a gritty defence and attacking flair in their next league game at Thornton Cleveleys on Sat Feb 12th.
Bonus point wins need to be on Trafford wish list as the proceed into the business end of the season where lost points will be very costly in the title challenge.
Trafford MV are keen to recruit local players who want to play regular rugby for any of its 3 senior men’s teams or its 2 women’s teams. Players with a desire to play local club rugby for a well organised, friendly set up should get in touch with email@example.com for further info.
The Club will be entering into the spirit of the 6 Nations Championship this coming Saturday with the games being shown in the big screens in the Clubhouse with Ireland vs Wales at 2.15pm followed by the Calcutta Cup clash Scotland vs England at 4.45pm.The France vs Italy game will be shown on Sunday at 3.00pm.
(By Wilf Dooley)
Cover photo – Scrum time TMV vs Aspull