A game of big heart and commitment.
On Saturday 23rd March, Middlesbrough Wasps, our 2nd XV superheroes travelled with 15 players to play Alnwick RUFC 2nd XV at Alnwick. We arrived to see a huge squad warming up ready to take us on, thinking we may be up against it today. Sure enough, Alnwick kick off and the ball is spilled. This gifted Alnwick with possession which they used well. Middlesbrough defend well with great tackling for almost 7 minutes, before Alnwick scored out wide as Boro ran out of defenders. Alnwick 5, Boro 0. This pattern was repeated for the 1st 27 minutes, with Alnwick playing some free-flowing attractive rugby, denying possession to Boro. They scored another 8 tries, leading by 52 – 0. Boro now start playing with a little possession, finishing the half with a lot of phases in the opposition 22. Great Alnwick defence keeping us out. There was good straight hard yards made by the Boro pack, and the backs ran good lines as we got closer and closer to a score. Macka’s quick tap penalty with support from Dale and Deeksey got us closest to a score. Half-time came as a relief at 0-52.
Matthews had to come off at half time with a shoulder injury. Alnwick gave us a player to keep the sides at 15 each. He played well against his team mates too. The second half started with great running from both sides. Boro’s front row along 2nd row Elliott Gough and Abe were running good straight lines, with good expansive play from our back row and backs. After 8 minutes of good pressure from Boro, Stumpy scored a great try to make it 5 – 52. This was a bitter-sweet moment, as he injured his ankle in the act of scoring. He was replaced by yet another Alnwick player who got stuck in to help us out. Boro continue the attacking after the restart, but a mis fielded Boro line out was swooped on by an Alnwick back row player with pace, leading to a good try against the flow of play. 5-59 now with 52 minutes played. Boro attack again after the restart, and the ball is moved very well, with backs interlinking with forwards running good lines. Eventually Boro’s man of the match, centre Dale scored a well-deserved try out wide. 10 – 52. This was much better from the Boro side. Boro attack again and look dangerous. A penalty kick for touch aimed deep into the Alnwick 22 missed touch though, and Alnwick ran in another entertaining try from deep. 10 -66. In the last 10 minutes, Alnwick scored 3 more tries to win 10 – 85. The Boro players were all tackling well, and running hard when we had possession. They never gave up and played with a great spirit. After the game, they emerged in full superhero attire to begin the party on the bus trip home that we couldn’t book. Well done lads, driving home to begin the party at Acklam Park. A game of great heart from our superheroes.