By Wilf Dooley
FT Score: MV 21-17 Hoylake
The sun shone once again at Trafford MV’s MacPherson as the home team got the better of the Wirral based Hoylake to help consolidate their 3rd place in the ADM Championship.
A good crowd enjoyed a very competitive match which could have gone either way. With only three games left to play in the league every point is now vital to justify league placings.
As usual in most of MV’s games it was the opposition that showed the early initiative and within minute Hoylake had scored to the left of the posts following goof forward play and crashing through the MV defence.
The relatively easy conversion was missed for a 0-5 lead. Trafford eased their way into the game as a steady period of pressure resulted in a penalty on the 22 metre line which stand off Pat Eccles kicked accurately 3-5.
Minutes late MV earned a similar range penalty and again Pat Eccles was on hand to take the points 6-5 to Trafford MV.
As the first half progressed play between the sides was close and hard and just before the interval came is was MV’s hard running Jamie Kingdon that broke the first line of defence and then kept powering through the second phase tacklers to run in under the posts and touchdown with Pat Eccles adding the extras from the conversion 13-5 for MV at half-time.
The referee had good control of the game and both teams were playing the game in the right spirit, hard but fair.
MV had good options on the bench and reshaped their team with Danny Burke and Gaz Bevan coming on soon followed by the firther introduction of Lweis Kingdon and James Webster.
Trafford collected further penalty points from Pat Eccles to extend their lead to 16-5 which was just as well as they seemed to lose their concentration and it was Hoylake that now took their inspiration.
Two tries in quick succession had MV reeling as firstly they split the MV defence and raced in under the posts with an easy conversion to follow 16-12.
Then crossing wide out to the right with a much more difficult kick to follow 16-17 and MV were on the ropes.
The game stalled for a couple of minutes after a crunching tackle from Danny Burke left an opposition back row player stunned and needing attention before leaving the field of play.
MV held the better hand as the game time ran short and an incisive break from Pat Eccles flat footed the visitors defence and it was second row Andrew Clegg who was on hand to take the offload and score a very good try to secure the game and the league points for MV, the conversion was missed and the final score was 21-17.
MV were pleased to have a better selection of players from which to choose the starting XV but with the introduction of new players we have new combinations to bed in. MV also have to be much better in retention of possession as often hard won ball is taken into tackles and lost to the opposition, basic rugby that needs to be much better if titles and promotions are to be won.
Trafford have a tough game on their hands this coming weekend as they travel to Merseyside to face Sefton who are currently in 2nd position just above TMV who are 3rd placed.
MV will need to have a good basic selection take the field but those selected must ensure a tight performance in defence and must have an attack that is able to penetrate and score points when they are there to be taken, points cannot be thrown away.
Player of the Match for Trafford MV was Pat Eccles.