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North 1 East League
Saturday, 20th March 2010
Carlisle 30 v Percy Park 10
The city side entertained Percy Park at Warwick Road. The league fixtures were swopped before Christmas when the pitches at Carlisle were waterlogged. Carlisle lost the away game despite probably being the better side on the day, so they were anxious to atone for letting that game slip.
Carlisle were bouyed by the return of several players who had been missing for a couple of weeks, and they quickly set about ensuring they did not let this game slip from their grasp.
A workmanlike performance ensured the league points, but the game was tighter than perhaps the scoreline suggests.
The home side, whilst generally dominant throughout, did have some anxious moments, particularly in the second half, when PP had one or two periods of sustained pressure that kept the city defence on their mettle.
Carlisle had shuffled their pack to allow pivot Lee Brumpton and loose head prop Steve Stamper to return, and they both worked hard to motivate the pack into ensuring an ample supply of the ball for the backs to work with.
Scrum half Ben Blain was sharp around the base of the scrum, and his crisp passing gave his threes some good ball to work with.
Fly half Glen Weightman opened the home account within a couple of minutes of the start when he slotted a penalty; he could have doubled the score within a minute but his attempt went wide.
On six minutes, full back Lewis Boyd combined well with his fellow backs, and outside centre, Chris Harris, released the ball to Boyd who grabbed an unconverted try.
Whilst PP worked hard throughout the opening period, they never really looked likely to breach the home rearguard. That said, Carlisle had several other chances to increase their grip on the game, but had to be content with another penalty from Weightman midway through the half.
Within a minute of the restart Lee Tinnion on the right wing, edged his side further ahead with a try (his first for the Club) out on the right after a powerful thrust up the field. In a short while Carlisle were forced into pack changes; lock Garteh Wylie had to retire with an ankle injury, and Scottish Under 18 Exiles player, Gary Graham, came off the bench to replace him.
Carlisle were not quite as cohesive as they had been in the first half and had to cope with a period of pressure from PP who were not about to cede the encounter without a fight! Indeed, they managed to reduce the arrears on fifty two minutes.
Jolted by this, Carlisle set out to ensure the game remained in their control and full back Boyd touched down for his second try within five minutes. Weightman converted.
The Carlisle back division were probably as effective as they had been during the season, and outside centre Chris Harris seemed to be revelling in the space he created for himself and at sixty five minutes he went over for a fine try close to the posts. He had found himself on the left flank just into the PP half; deft footwork left the defenders in his wake as he raced for the line. Again, Weightman had the easiest of conversions.
The north east side, although probably resigned to defeat, disrupted the Carlisle rhythm and the home defence had to withstand a sustained period of pressure on their own line. Eventually, Park got another try six minutes into added time.
This result was enough to lift Carlisle out of the relegation bloc, and with many of the other league results going their way, they have another chance to get more league points when they entertain Pontefract at home this Saturday.
SCORERS FOR CARLISLE:
Tries: Lewis Boyd (2) Chris Harris (1) Lee Tinnion (1)
Conversions: Glen Weightman (2)
Penalties: Glen Weightman (2)
PICK OF THE PACK: Steve Stamper (pic above)
BEST OF THE BACKS: Chris Harris
THE STARTING XV:
15 Lewis Boyd
14 Lee Tinnion
13 Chris Harris
12 Lee Askew
11 Olly Barker (Jack Oddie)
10 Glen Weightman
9 Ben Blain
1 Steve Stamper (Capt)
2 Tom Graham (Graham Kidd)
3 Martin Kalinowski
4 Mark Barron
5 Gareth Wylie (Gary Graham)
6 Dan Smithson
7 Bobby Sherlock
8 Lee Brumpton
16 Graham Kidd
17 Gary Graham
18 Jack Oddie