Photo credit - David Whittam - Rosslyn Park
Having never beaten Rosslyn Park RFC on their own patch, the narrow win yesterday by DMPRFC not only broke that hoodoo, but also cemented a change in form of Director of Rugby Danny BROWN’s North East outfit, having beaten two of the previous top three sides in National League One.
The tally might have been greater with a three out of three haul, had Mowden not lost their way somewhat in the second half against Blackheath last weekend, preventing the clean sweep of very tricky games.
It now emerges that Ampthill & District RFC are the new leaders in this open league and there is no doubt that this will change as fixtures play out, as the top six sides are only separated by six points.
DMPRFC’s DoR Danny BROWN was very pleased with the result of the London trip to Rosslyn Park’s Rock HQ, commenting on the poor run of results prior to the Christmas break and commenting that the ‘sea-change’ of attitude and belief inculcated in his side since the New Year is almost tangible.
To think that a once small time club such as Darlington Grammar School Old Boys not so many years ago were operating in friendly leagues and then the local Durham and Northumberland leagues. To be now rubbing shoulders with and beating the more established clubs in England, is testament to the club’s journey both on and off the field and to players past and previous, together with the connections involved in the transformation.
A good early score from visiting winger Shaun McCARTNEY was the start that Mowden wanted after only 2 minutes, bullocking his way through some poor tackling in the home defence (0 – 5), with fly half Warren SEALS converting (0 – 7).
Home fly half Greg LOUND responded with a penalty, (3 – 7), before the home side opened their try tally, when winger Charlie AMESBURY went over, (8 – 7), LOUND missing with the afters.
Scrum half Matt DUDMAN registered his side’s second try after 15 minutes, taking a quick tap penalty and burrowing over for the score as the home defence retreated (8 – 12) and with SEALS again finding the mark with a conversion, (8 – 14), onlookers knew there was a game in store.
As the game settled and entered the second quarter, home lock Hugh TIZZARD was over (13 – 14) and this time Rosslyn Park edged in front with a successful conversion from LOUND, (15 - 14), which was to be the pattern for the game throughout. LOUND added a further penalty to extend his side’s lead to 4.
Warren SEALS added a penalty for the visitors and at 18 – 17, the game couldn’t have been closer as oranges arrived and the combatants took a break.
On resumption of play, it wasn’t long before Greg LOUND edged his side further ahead after 46 minutes, (21 – 17) and following sustained pressure on the DMP line, home skipper Hugo ELLIS dotted down from the ensuing maul (26 – 17), with LOUND making no mistake with the conversion, (28 – 17)
Two outstanding tries followed, both by the visiting side, to bring Mowden right back into the game as the match entered the final quarter.
The first fell to the electric pace of Mowden wing Brandon ASHER-WOOD (28 – 22), after a well timed break from fellow South African Seals. His try was followed by one from mercurial full back Chris McTURK (28 – 27), SEALS converted edging Mowden ahead. (28 – 29)
Mowden’s No. 8 Joe CRAGGS was sin-binned with only two minutes remaining, as Greg LOUND struck the penalty that saw Rosslyn Park take the home side two points in front and seemingly in a position to win the game. (31 - 29)
However, the last kick of the game was awarded to Warren SEALS, after a home player was adjudged by the referee Mr Daniel COLLINS to have gone off his feet at the ruck. Keeping his composure for the win, SEALS kicked the ball straight and true and through the uprights to seal a very tight and entertaining game.
ROSSLYN PARK RFC
15. Harry LEONARD (Russell WEIR, 70), 14. Bamidele FADAHUNSI, 13. Oliver GROVE, 12. Joe MUNRO, 11. Charles AMESBURY, 10. Gregory LOUND, 9. Jack GASH (LEONARD, 78), 1. Alistair WADE (Maurice NWAKOR-NWANAEBI, 40, WADE, 78)), 2. Karl GIBSON (Arthur ELLIS, 70), 3. Paul DORAN-JONES (Nicolas LOVELL, 55), 4. Hugh TIZZARD (FRAMPTON, 55), 5. Gregor GILLANDERS, 6. Adam FRAMPTON (Michael MACFARLANE, 40), 7. Arthur ELLIS (Jack BARNARD, 62), 8. Hugo ELLIS.
Replacements: All Used
Try: AMESBURY (8), TIZARD 21), ELLIS (54)
Conversion: LOUND (22, 55)
Penalty: LOUND (6, 35, 46, 78)
Drop Goal: None
Yellow Card: None.
15. Chris McTURK, 14. Brandon ASHER-WOOD, 13. Callum MACKENZIE, 12. Garry LAW, 11. Shaun McCARTNEY, 10. Warren SEALS, 9. Matt DUDMAN, 1. Alfie BARRON, 2. Jordan POOLE (Jamie BLAMIRE, 53), 3. Ralph APPLEBY, 4. Jacob BRADY (Dave FISHER), 5. Talite VAIOLETI (Franco LAMANNA-MIRANDA, 78), 6. Matt HEATON, 7. George STOKES, 8. Joe CRAGGS.
Replacements: Not used – Oliver HODGSON, Rian HAMILTON
Try: McCARTNEY (2), DUDMAN (15), ASHER-WOOD (60), McTURK (68)
Conversion: SEALS (3, 16, 69)
Penalty: SEALS (36, 80))
Drop Goal: None
Yellow Card: Joe CRAGGS (78)
Referee: Mr Daniel COLLINS
Referee’s Assistant: Matthew M SHALES
Referee’s Assistant: Tracy PETTINGALE
Player of the Match: Chris McTURK (DMPRFC)
NEXT WEEK – DMPRFC v BIRMINGHAM MOSELEY RFC (H)
Updated 17:26 - 26 Jan 2019 by Tom Bulmer