Darlington Mowden Park R.F.C.

ROSSENDALE RFC 16 v DMPRFC 27

by Kevin Robinson

Good away win in heavy conditions at Rossendale.

As DMPRFC set off to travel to Rossendale’s Marl Pits HQ, the weather was fine and dry. But as they travelled West and over Saddleworth Moor, those conditions worsened, with rain and fog the order of the day.

So it was no surprise that the pitch, which the week previous had just made the referee’s inspection, was wet and conditions heavy going.

However, it was the same for both teams, although DMPRFC would have preferred a firmer surface.

With several old campaigners in their line-up. Rossendale are always a tough proposition, whether home or away and DMPRFC knew that this fixture was not going to be any different.

Things started brightly for the visitors, with an early Grant Connon penalty, as the home side strayed offside and although Rossendale levelled with a similar penalty, the pace of the game which was introduced by DMPRFC saw benefits when Cameron MITCHELL jinked his way to the line, leaving an easy conversion for Grant Connon. (3 – 10).

Rossendale tried to slow down the game and bring their big forwards into it and this occurred, as at first they were successful with another penalty (6 – 10), then as they seemed to dominate just before oranges, they scored a try, conversion and penalty, to leave DMPRFC trailing at the break.

DMPRFC during this period, had been hampered by the loss of Dan MILLER after half an hour and a temporary loss of the abrasive Luke WISHNOWSKY for a blood injury. Both of these were replace ably by Danny DIXON and Liam Riley respectively.

After oranges, it was all DMPRFC, who playing down the slope, again upped the pace of the game and took it to Rossendale, who visibly tired.
Firstly, it was Grant Connon who’s penalty steadied the ship (16 – 13) and then this was followed by a Matt LISTER try in the corner (16 – 18). Grant Connon slotted a good conversion, (16 – 20) to take DMPRFC away from Rossendale and they never looked back.

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Again DMPRFC suffered an injury, with the loss of influential flanker Graeme SEDDON.

The home side tried to rally at one stage with a series of catch and drives, but once good defence had repelled these attempts to redress the balance, DMPRFC kicked on again, with Chris McTurk gathering a chip from Grant Connon, to go over in the corner for the third try. (16 – 25), with Grant Connon converting (16 – 27).

At this stage DMPRFC had only 14 men on the pitch, as Andrew TONKIN was sin-binned late on.

DMPRFC tried in vain to secure a bonus point for their fourth try, but settled for the win and four points to their league tally

So a good result away at Rossendale, who will always cause problems for teams on their own pitch.

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