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Home > News > Westoe 40 - Hull 19
Your News Westoe 40 - Hull 19

WESTOE played like champions to begin 2009 at the top of North One.

This was a tremendous team performance to repel the side who have so far, and with good reason, been regarded as firm favourites to take the title.

The two teams had been locked together at the top of the table for ten weeks, though Hull claimed the number one spot by virtue of a significantly better scoring record.

Each had lost just one of the previous 11 games, the Shieldsmen’s defeat, as is vividly and painfully remembered, being a 63-8 thrashing by the Tykes in the second match of the campaign.

So there was pride as well as points to be played for here and Gareth Nesbit’s men went about the task from the off with a zeal that must have surprised and certainly largely smothered the best efforts of big and able opponents.

The staunch Westoe defence, the bedrock of the team’s success in recent times, had never been in better or more ferocious form, time and again overwhelming the man with the ball before he had time to make any use of it.

Hull breached the blockade twice to score, which was scant reward for a side replete with South Sea flare and menace, with more than 400 points already in the locker and which had plenty of possession.

What they didn’t have on the day was someone who could grasp a chance with the nimbleness of mind and limb of the marvellous Willy Moala who notched a hat-trick of tries to take his tally to a league best of 16.

Nesbit revealed afterwards that several of his team, including himself, had not trained during the week because they were carrying an injury. This lack of preparation certainly did not show.

He declared: “This was a brilliant win and our defence was just fantastic. It was a game of very high stakes and everyone knew exactly what he had to do and did it superbly.

“I couldn’t nominate our man of the match - everyone gave it their all to make it a simply terrific team performance.”

This was always going to be a robust, no-nonsense clash and, with precious little between the sides, it was only in the last quarter when Dunes Adventure Island-sponsored Westoe ran in three tries that the biggest crowd at Wood Terrace this season could breath easily.

Hull fly half James Cameron kicked an early penalty which was quickly negated by a coolly-taken drop goal by his opposite number Sam Rasch

Then Darren Wigg, on the right wing as a blood substitute, dived over in the corner after a quick-fire cross field move to put the visitors back infront only for the home team to again draw level soon afterwards when Moala sped from the 22 line to score from a similar move.

An exchange of penalties meant that Westoe reached the interval with a slender 14-11 lead which was increased soon after when centre David Haswell broke clear to off-load to Moala who had a clever interchange of passes with full back John McFarlane before the right winger touched down.

Hull, with the advantage of the slope, then applied plenty of pressure but such was the Westoe barricade - with strongly-built centre James Fitzpatrick prominent - that they had only a Cameron penalty to show for it.

It was against the run of play when in the 63rd minute Rasch dodged and danced his way over, after which came a slice of luck that made victory pretty certain.

A pass rebounded off a visitor’s chest straight into spring-heeled Moala’s hands inside his own half and, with Hull wrong-footed, there was no chance of anyone stopping him completing his hat-trick.

As time ebbed away a precision kick by full back Guy Martinson was touched down by centre Alex Piercy, but any flickering hopes that Hull may still have had were dashed in injury time when Fitzpatrick intercepted a pass and sprinted 60 yards to score - McFarlane kicking this third conversion.

The score line may have somewhat flattered Westoe but that did not stop the celebrations going on far into the night.

*The Seconds took an early lead in their Northumberland League game at Berwick when scrum half Danny Irving followed up his own kick to dive past an indecisive defender to touch down - fly half Graham Tiffin converting - but thereafter the home team took charge and, despite spirited defence by Westoe, ran out 19-7 winners.


* The Thirds, also in league action, had a convincing 34-0 win over Gosforth Seconds who never came to terms with a muddy Oakleigh Gardens pitch, the Westoe pack dominating and providing plenty of possession. Tries were scored by number 8 Graham Aldus (two), locks John Gregg and Steve Frewer, winger Craig Shaw and centre Chad Reah, two of them converted by full back Paul Hagan.

*Cry-offs from the Seconds downwards meant that the Fourths were unable to raise a team for their league

game at Morpeth, a sadly too often recurring scenario.

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