Hull 34 – 27 Lymm
1st Team Match Report | Saturday November 11 2023
Lymm hare beaten by Hull tortoise
Having beaten the hosts’ local rivals Hull Ionians the previous week with a try in the last five minutes, Lymm were welcomed with open arms at Hull who were warm and hospitable in the clubhouse but not so on the pitch.
On a still, sunny but chilly day, the conditions would ensure a fast, open, running style from both teams on what was clearly a firm and well cared for grass surface. Hull were four places above Lymm, but only four points ahead so it promised to be a close encounter.
Supporters from both sides had barely taken their positions pitch side when the Hull fly half tried to clear from the kick off but his kick was charged down by centre and Captain James Kimber who fly-kicked the ball on and won the chase to touch down as it went over the try line. 0 – 5 after 50 seconds of play, something of a record surely! Fly half Tom Shard’s conversion attempt hit the post, just failing to convert.
A penalty attempt from Shard 2 minutes later, from 40 yards out, was also missed but Lymm were on the front foot and full of confidence at this stage. A good defensive stint from Lymm in their own 22 was encouraging and then full back Jack Reynolds was put into space on the left side in a flowing backs move. He released centre, birthday boy, Ste Pilkington, who was making his 50th appearance for Lymm, and never looked like not scoring, making it 0 – 12 after 12 mins, with Shard’s conversion.
Tails were well and truly up and another flowing and subtle backs move then released right winger Andy Williams, who had joined the line on the left, to score a third try. Shard hit the post again but it was 0 – 17 after 18 mins and looking good.
Hull then seemed to wake from their giant slumber and a try, from an attacking scrum 5m out took the score to 7 – 17 with the successful conversion, after 25 mins.
Lymm’s defence was sorely tested at this stage as Hull seemed determined to get back into the game. A successful 50-22 kick gave the hosts an attacking line out and the subsequent rolling maul did the rest. 12 – 17 on 30 mins following the missed conversion.
Hull continued to pile on the pressure and prop Matty Hand put in a superb try-saving tackle in the corner, following a flowing move from Hull’s back division. The defensive line out was lost and Hull trundled over again from the inevitable rolling maul, taking the half time score to 17 – 17 as the conversion went over as the whistle went and even-stevens.
Half Time: Hull 17 – 17 Lymm
As the hosts had fought their way back into the game it was now interesting to see how the visitors would respond. With all to play for, Lymm applied sustained pressure and looked dangerous ball-in-hand, with second row Rhys Lilley particularly prominent. Possession was key and a penalty to Lymm 5m out under the posts was converted by Shard making it 17 – 20 after 49 mins.
However, little errors crept into Lymm’s execution and this gave Hull some breathing space, as they relieved the pressure with long kicks and took the sting out of Lymm’s momentum.
A penalty to Hull made it 20 – 20 after 51 mins. Looking more and more threatening, Hull just missed another penalty by also hitting the post and then scrum half, Cal Morris, who is always a nuisance to the opposition, intercepted a wayward pass and sprinted 50m under the sticks for Shard to easily convert – 20 – 27 after 57 mins, and the four try bonus point in the bag.
Despite this interruption to their momentum Hull stuck to the task and, arguably the turning point of the game followed. A high kick from Lymm was fielded well by Hull’s full back Jamie Shaul who then went on to beat three defenders and score an excellent individual try – 27 – 27 with the conversion, after 64 mins.
Having spotted the success of their rolling maul, Hull went in for the kill. Another attacking line out 22m out gave Hull the platform they needed for the heavy forwards to trundle over the line and score the match winning try – 34 – 27 with the successful conversion on 70 mins.
Lymm, with due credit, then threw the kitchen sink at Hull who defended surge after surge towards the line most sternly, and with typical Yorkshire and South Sea Island grit. At this point club vice-captain Nathan Beesley, on the bench and back from injury, and with his renowned speed and elusiveness, was introduced on the right wing, but could not find his way through such a well organised defence.
If there is such a thing as an honourable loss this was it and Lymm will be disappointed but should be proud of the two points they took away from East Riding against a very tough, well drilled and determined outfit.
Full Time: Hull 34 – 27 Lymm
DoR Adam Fletcher had this to say: ‘I was really happy with how we started the game. To be 17-0 up after 20 minutes was a fair reflection of how dominant we were in that period.’
‘Unfortunately, the next 20 minutes was all Hull and they utilised their power game well. We got ourselves back in front with 20 minutes to go but just couldn’t see the game out.’
‘Overall, we are satisfied with the 2 points gained,’ he concluded
Many thanks also to Referee Dave Charlton and his Assistant Referees Simon Lazenby and Graham Bentley.
On Saturday Lymm entertain league leaders Leeds Tykes at Beechwood, KO 3pm, in what promises to be a fierce and testing encounter.
Team: 1. Ralph McCreachan, 2. James Pitcher, 3. Matty Hand, 4. Rhys Lilly, 5. Ben Thompson, 6. Sean Callandar, 7. Joe Johnson, 8. Harry Martin, 9. Cal Morris, 10. Tom Shard, 11. Paddy Jennings, 12. James Kimber (C), 13. Ste Pilkington, 14. Andy Williams, 15. Jack Reynolds, Reserves: 16. Nick Ashton, 17. Gav Woods, 18. James Yates, 20. Nathan Beesley, 22 Andy Rowley
The 2nd team had an excellent away win at Wirral 12 – 40.
Full back Jack Reynolds making the break for Pilkington’s try
Center Ste Pilkington, scores his try
Young prop Ralph McCreachen on the rampage
Prop Gav woods making ground
Cal Morris celebrating his interception try