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Home > News > Westoe 47 Middlesbrough 0
Your News Westoe 47 Middlesbrough 0

What a difference a week can make! This was the balm Westoe so badly needed for the wounds inflicted at Hull.

They bounced back from that 63-8 hiding with an effervescent display that was a mighty boost to their injured self-respect and confidence as well as demonstrating the resilience at the core of the squad.

Apart from a win in the bag, the measure of it eradicated the for-and-against points deficit created by that ten-try drubbing, which could be vital in the final reckoning of this North One campaign

On a day for short sleeves and sun glasses, this was a game played at high pace and the fitness of Gareth Nesbits side showed as their opponents, sorely tried and tested before the interval, wilted under pressure in the heat of the second half.

Middlesbroughs burly pack may well cause problems on other days, but on this occasion they were not equal to Westoes strong and street-wise forwards who had much the better of things in rucks and mauls as well as set pieces - with 6ft 6ins lock Matthew Muchall again a towering influence in lineouts.

They provided an abundance of good ball that made it an open and entertaining performance by Dunes Adventure Island-sponsored Westoe, but there were also too many handling and passing lapses in good attacking situations without which their tally would have been significantly higher.

Big Nes was justifiably in much improved spirits by the quite remarkable turnabout in fortunes which demonstrated that not only in politics is seven days a long time.

He declared: It was not just about the scoreline, but our strong desire to come back strongly and prove ourselves. The nil points conceded was important because it showed our commitment.

But he added: Mistakes were made which leaves room for improvement. With all the possession we had we really should have put more points on the board.

The three Kiwis in Westoes starting ranks were responsible for giving their side an 18-point lead at the turnaround.

Fly half Sam Rasch kicked an early penalty and drop goal and then scored the first of his three conversions after flanker Kerry Wood had burst over near the left corner flag in the 15th minute.

Then on the half hour, to the delight of the crowd winger, Willy Moala showed his whippet-like speed with a 40-yard burst deep into the Middlesbrough 22 and, though brought down just short, he made no mistake with a second spurt when the ball reached him from an ensuing penalty scrum.

Any lingering recovery hopes that the visitors had must have vanished soon after the resumption when Muchall stole their ball from a five-metre lineout and forced his way over.

Soon afterwards came the most thrilling move when the ball sped across the three quarters for centre Mark Olugbode to draw one defender before off-loading to Moala who left another in his slipstream.

By now the visitors, who had never really looked like breaching a sturdy defence, were well and truly under the cosh and there was an inevitability about it when scrum half Chris Judson and then Muchall touched down from close quarters.

With time ebbing away, there was another flash of Maola magic as his speed split the defence, his precision pass finding muscular flanker James Fitzpatrick who powered his way over.

The game ended on a somewhat disappointing note when, in the last move, a forward pass prevented the fourth New Zealander, replacement hooker Moe Souter, scoring a try on his debut.

*The play-it-wide tactics of the Beacon Electrical (NE) Ltd-sponsored Thirds out-maneuvered host team Novocastrians, whose strength was in the pack, to secure a 33-21Northumberland League victory.

Tries were scored by flanker Olly Douthwaite, centre Johnny Thompson, prop Rob Scorer, winger John Jeffrey and full back Paul Hagan, who also kicked four conversions. Players are reminded that there is training at Wood Terrace on Wednesday night.,

*Also on league duty, the Vic Young-sponsored Fourths, a blend of youth and experience, beat Gosforth Thirds 27-0 in a good allround display. Tries were scored by fly half Richard Elliott, centres Danial Whitelaw and Graham Coleman, full back Anthony Thompson and flanker Gavin Graham. Scrum half Michael Booth kicked a conversion.

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