Woolston Rovers 32 Hindley 18

WOOLSTON Rovers made it back to back victories for the first time this season when they defeated Hindley in the Kingstone Press National Conference League Division Three at Monks Sports Club on Saturday.

Rovers, having to make another six changes from the team that faced Heworth last week, produced a very gritty performance against an equally spirited Hindley side and were full value for the win over their near rivals.

Woolston opened the scoring in the fourteenth minute when a fine run by winger Ryan Price-Jones got him to within five metres of the Hindley line and a quick play the ball saw hooker Scott Whiteley find prop forward Andy Addison who managed to ground the ball wide out on the right despite the attention of four defenders, and then six minutes later a 40/20 by Rovers stand off Gavin Bishop gave his side a scrum in a great position and good work by Whiteley and scrum half Chris Mellor saw the ball reach second row Danny Griffiths and he put centre John Welch over wide out on the right.

Hindley hit back on the half hour when pressure on the Rovers line, following two goal line drop outs paid dividends as loose forward James Lucas forced his way over on the right. Scrum half Steve Sutcliffe converted but then failed with a penalty attempt right on the stroke of half time which meant that Rovers went in at the break with a narrow 8-6 advantage.

Two minutes into the second half, straight from a scrum on the Hindley forty metre line, Rovers loose forward Lewis Stockton took the ball from the base of it, spotted a gap and raced clear to score a superb try under the posts. Bishop converted but then an error by Rovers from the restart gave Hindley a penalty, and after hooker Ben Mullen had been held just short Sutcliffe went on his own from dummy half to score under the posts. Sutcliffe converted himself to narrow the gap to two points once again.

Just before the hour Rovers regained the ascendancy when pressure on the Hindley line led to Griffiths going from dummy half to force his way over; Bishop converted and then almost immediately a superb forty metre run down the middle by Mellor split the Hindley defence and he found full back Steve Arnold in support to go over under the posts. Bishop added the conversion.

Rovers made the game safe six minutes from time when a brilliant 40 metre break by Whiteley got the home side deep into Hindley territory and a couple of quick play of the balls stretched the visitors line and substitute Dave Kelly put Arnold over after winger James Rosson had been held just short. Bishop tagged on the extras but then right on the stroke of full time Hindley capitalised on a Rovers handling error in their own twenty metre line when Lucas scored out wide on the right. Sutcliffe converted to make the final score 32-18 in the Rovers favour.

The man of the match was awarded for the second week running to Rovers loose forward Lewis Stockton. He was very well supported by stand-off Gavin Bishop and , prop forward Andy Addison.

After the game Rovers head coach Lee Westwood said: “That was a really tough, physical encounter and I am delighted that we were able to come out on top and get the two points.

“Hindley certainly contributed fully to an excellent game but it was the extra belief that our lads had in their own ability that enabled us to pull clear in the final quarter.

“We have not been able to get a settled side so far this season due to injuries and work commitments but I have confidence that once we do click then we will be a very tough proposition for any side we come up against.

“We now have a couple of weeks without a game but we will use that time to work on some areas that we have struggled in and hopefully it will enable us to keep moving up the league table.”

Rovers: Steve Arnold; Ryan Price-Jones, Chris Brown, John Welch, James Rosson; Gavin Bishop; Chris Mellor, Andy Addison, Scott Whiteley, Wez Lawton, Danny Brown, Danny Griffiths, Lewis Stockton. Subs: Sam Wood, Dave Kelly, Josh Sudlow, Phil Stevens.