Words: Richard Sykes – Images: Dave Morton

Huddersfield RUFC refused to be rolled over by top-of-the-table Sedgley Tigers who maintained their 100% winning run in National 2 North with a hard-fought victory at Lockwood Park.

Field went down 26-38 but the Tigers knew they’d been in a game and Huddersfield claimed a well-deserved try scoring bonus point.

At the end of a second half in which Field staged a determined come back, skipper Lewis Bradley crashed over for his second try of the afternoon to secure the bonus and lift his team up one place in the league standings.  

After the game Huddersfield’s director of rugby Gaz Lewis said: “In the first half Sedgley played with speed and accuracy. They pulled our defence out of shape and we struggled to get set.

“Many teams would have capitulated and I was proud with the way the lads played for the full 80 minutes and came away with the four-try bonus point.”

Tigers were off the mark in the opening minutes when flanker Mark Goodman scored from a catch and drive from a lineout. Although Field made a positive response to the early setback they were unable to prevent their pacy opponents extending their lead with two more tries in the first quarter.

Winger Rhys Henderson rounded the Field defence for the first of them after a good break by full-back Andrew Riley, with prop Cashel Chilvers scoring from close range for the second. All three were converted by fly-half Stephen Collins.

Henderson was yellow carded on 27 minutes for a late tackle on his opposite number Lewis Workman and it wasn’t long before Field cashed in on their extra man.

The penalty took play to the 5 metre line and the maul from the lineout took it in field. Tigers were penalised again, this time the home side opted to scrummage. The Field pack were strong at the setpiece and the visitors were penalised twice more for infringing at it before skipper Bradley picked up and crashed over from behind an eventually steady scrum. Will Milner added the conversion.

Tigers scored their bonus point try on the stroke of half-time when flanker George Bordhill drove over from a lineout, leaving the score at the break 7-28.

Field started the second half briskly. Centre Ed Barber made a fine break, delivering a nifty off load to Fin Stewart on the wing and Tigers found themselves being pressed on their line. Field worked the ball through the phases and had Tigers scrambling in defence before Barber powered over for a try on 53 minutes which Milner converted.

Tigers composed themselves after the setback and showed the class that has placed them top of the table. Two unconverted tries mid-way through the half by centre Robert Holloway and Bordill finally scotched any hope of an upset.

The home side did, however, hit back and finished the match strongly, their mettle and determination earning them the well deserved bonus point with two more tries in the final 10 minutes.

After sustained pressure on the Tigers line, prop Loz Sanderson forced his way over for the first of them, which Milner failed to convert from wide out, before Bradley rounded things off in the final play of the match. Milner’s conversion brought an entertaining game to an end.

Field host Tynedale at Lockwood Park on Saturday December 3 (2.15pm ko). They will be hoping to carry on where they left off and pick up a third win of the campaign over the team in 7th place.

Huddersfield: Hodson; Workman; Law; Barber; Stewart; Milner; Summers; Thompson; Stapley; Sanderson; Pearson; Jennings; Myers; Parfitt; Bradley. Replacements: Effiom; Rollins; Potter; Swift; Lee.