Words by Richard Sykes – Pictures by Gerald Tinson
Huddersfield RUFC ended their six-match National 2 North losing run with a Workman-like, four-try bonus point win over fellow strugglers Blaydon.
The highlight of the match was a hat-trick by winger Lewis Workman which lifted the spirits at Lockwood Park and also lifted the team off the foot of the table.
Field dominated territory and possession throughout and were well worthy of the 24-7 victory, their first of the season.
Director of rugby Gaz Lewis said: “It’s great to be back to winning ways. We played with tempo and made some good line breaks, with good support around the ball, and scored some excellent tries. It was nice to see the confidence returning and growing.”
The first quarter was played entirely in the Blaydon half but Field had to wait until the 23rd minute to get the scoreboard ticking. They camped on the Blaydon line from the kick off and the visitors did well to hold them. Out scrummaged in front of their posts, the Tynesiders managed to relieve the early pressure when Field conceded a penalty.
The break through came after good work in centre field by Lewis Bradley and Ed Barber saw the ball worked wide to the left wing, where Workman dotted down for the first of his three.
Although Will Milner missed the conversion attempt he made no mistake 10 minutes later when Field full-back Tom Hodson finished off a move he started under his own posts.
His break from defence was continued down the right wing by Fin Stewart, drawing inside support from Matt Law, with Hodson re-joining the line for a try between the sticks at the other end.
In between Field’s two tries Blaydon had their chances to get themselves into the game. Lively wingman Nathan Greenwood, who looked threatening every time he had ball in hand, made a stunning break, which was halted by an equally stunning try-saving tackle by Hodson.
The first half ended with a third try for Field. From behind a scrum on half way Barber made the break, the ball passed through the hands of Law and Hodson resulting in a corner flag try for Workman. Half-time score 17-0.
In the early exchanges of the second half Stewart demonstrated his pace and class with some moments of rugby magic, which put Blaydon on the back foot.
On 49 minutes he made an athletic, aerial take of a high clearance kick and set up a move which saw the ball moved to the opposite wing to Workman, who knocked on with the whitewash beckoning.
However Workman only had to wait five more minutes to complete his hat-trick. Another superb catch by Stewart was followed by a mesmerising break from inside his own half, almost to the Blaydon line, where he gifted Workman a simple finish close to the posts. Milner added the extras.
To their credit the visitors did not capitulate and they finished the match strongly. In the early part of the game, when chances had come their way, they went begging due to poor throw ins, careless handling and hastiness.
Their consolation score, however, was clinical. From behind a solid scrum on half way, scrum-half John Clarkson made a fine, sniping run to put Owen Chapman in for a try between the posts, which was converted by fly-half Zach Thompson.
Next week Huddersfield travel to Rotherham and Lewis added: “We enjoyed our win but are realistic about where Blaydon are in the league table. We now have to focus on our tough trip to take on the Titans.”
Huddersfield: Hodson, F Stewart, Law, Barber, Stewart, Milner, Wilson, Thompson, Stapley, Sanderson, Pearson, Jones, Jennings, Parfitt, Bradley (capt), Brown. Replacements; Myers, Lee, Effiom, Rollins; Swift.