Jan 30 2014 Ormskirk Advertiser
Tarleton's Ben Craven disrupting another Workington attack.
TARLETON FIRST XV were up against Workington RUFC on Saturday, a team they had lost away to earlier in the season.
Workington were two points behind Tarleton in the league and a win for them would leapfrog them above Tarleton.
A win for Tarleton would probably see them move up three places as the two teams above them had difficult fixtures.
The weather was windy and wet but was not as bad as predicted so the game went ahead and Tarleton started the game better than Workington. Will Fell kicked the ball through in Tarleton’s first attack and chased it down well, the pressure causing the Workington full-back to knock-on in his 22.
From the resulting scrum Archie Skofic picked up at No. 8 and drew his man before passing inside to Jack Kelly who also sucked in the defender before off-loading to the charging Matt Forrest who ran an unstoppable line and crashed over under the posts to give Tarleton a 5-0 lead.
Workington then came into the game and like so many sides in this division used their big forwards and centres to drive the ball up-field. Tarleton were equal to the task and dealt with the pressure well and for 20 minutes the game was a midfield battle with no side being able to find a chink in the others’ armour.
Tarleton were giving away too many penalties at the breakdown, mainly for being offside and from one of these the Workington No. 10 brought the score to 5-3.
Tarleton then had a purple patch and attacked the Workington line in waves, the Workington defence stopped the chance of a try on four occasions by illegally killing the ball and on the fifth chance, when they did this again, the ref gave a penalty try that was converted by Aiden Miller and Tarleton went in at half time 12-3 ahead.
The wind picked up in the second half and despite Tarleton having most of the possession and territory they couldn’t seem to put enough phases together to trouble the scoreboard. Workington started to play forwards rugby and took the ball into contact to create maul after maul, some of Tarleton’s forwards were guilty of standing off at these, allowing Workington to make some good yardage and put the Tarleton defence on the back foot.
Workington were camped in Tarleton’s 22 for 10 minutes and Tarleton were pinged two or three times for being offside at the ruck, when this happened again the ref awarded Workington a penalty try which was converted to bring the score to 12-10.
Tarleton’s spectators were getting worried at this stage as all the impetus seemed to be with Workington. Tarleton continued to give away penalties and Workington kicked for the corner on each occasion but Tarleton’s defence held firm.
A clearance kick by Tarleton was fumbled in Workington’s 22 and a quick strike and fast ball saw the ball get across the line to Jamal Cantwell who crashed over to score a third try for Tarleton.
Aiden Miller converted from wide with an excellent kick considering the conditions and the score was 19-10 to Tarleton.
This proved to be the last kick of the match and although Tarleton hadn’t managed the targeted bonus point win they did move up two places and are now one point behind Aldwinians who they have yet to play in the second half of this season.
The second team had a replay against Fleetwood in the Cup and a much different team than last week travelled with a mix of a few regular seconds, five senior Colts and some players who don’t usually get a full game came away with a 38-0 win.
They will now face Ormskirk away next Saturday in the next round. The First XV are also in cup action and are also away, this time against old rivals De La Salle (Salford) who have played 14 and won 14 in North Lancs 1.
This is another difficult fixture for the First XV and they will have to be at their best to come away with a win.