IT was another bright sunny afternoon at Green Lane and a large crowd gathered in support of the home team.
A close and competitive game of rugby followed between these two promotion seeking sides.
The first five minutes was very tight, with both sides holding possession deep within their opponents’ halves. It took a good bit of skill from Ormskirk inside centre Neil Habberfield to break the deadlock.
Habberfield smashed through Liverpool Collegiate’s first line of defence with a strong angled run and chipped the ball over the second wave of defenders. It bounced nicely for Joe Hodson who ran in for the try, coolly evading Collegiate’s last man.
Lambie added the conversion, 7-0. Unfortunately for the gingerbread men, momentum could not be gathered as two players were sin binned shortly after the try due to a rash challenge during a Collegiate lineout. Ormskirk defended strongly during the next ten minutes, but Collegiate built up the pressure and forced Ormskirk to give away two penalties within kicking distance, these were both converted.
Taking the score to 7-6 after 25 minutes.
Following the return of the sin binned players Ormskirk once again looked dangerous. After a long period of play within the away half, Ormskirk were awarded a penalty. Lambie secured the three points, 10-6. Ormskirk quickly added more points to their tally following a break and neat off-load from James Illingworth which left the try line beckoning for flanker Martin Rothwell who dove over the line for a try. At half time the score stood at 15-6.
Liverpool Collegiate had a great start to the second half, surprising Ormskirk’s defence with a breakaway try. It was converted and brought the visitors within two points of the home team, 15-13. Ormskirk were not rattled and pressurised the Collegiate defence once more. After five minutes of the second half Habberfield once again broke through the defensive line and was able to pop the ball to outside centre Oli Griffiths, who showed good pace winning a 35 yard sprint to the corner. The score now stood at 20-13. The next 20 minutes was hotly contested with both sides proving difficult to break down. In the 63rd minute Ormskirk managed to win a penalty within kicking range and Illingworth slotted it between the posts, taking the score to 23-13.
Liverpool Collegiate still had plenty of fight left and Ormskirk defended hard for the next ten minutes with good defensive displays from Mark Webster and Ryan Purcell. However, the pressure didn’t let up and with just over five minutes left to play Collegiate crossed Ormskirk’s line taking them within five points.
The remaining few minutes saw largely a midfield battle with no real threats coming from either side.
Ormskirk are third in the league table and look to strengthen their position against Dukinfield first team next Saturday.
Ormskirk second and fourth teams are hosting Leigh thirds and WirralIV respectively, and Ormskirk III are playing away against Prenton second team.