Both teams came into the game after good victories last weekend, Huddersfield YMCA getting their first win of the season, against a Percy Park team who had defeated Kendal a fortnight earlier.
Top try scorer Nick Carlton was away watching the international at Murrayfield, so Dini Noyo came in on the wing. Jordan Johnson replaced him on the bench, and was joined by Joe Cook who replaced Nathan Wooff who had picked up an injury.
Kendal playing with a strong wind in the first half started well, but when the ball was lost deep in the Huddersfield half, they attacked with a long period controlled handling with short forward bursts that took them to the line. A stoppage for an injury gave Huddersfield a scrum, at which they were penalised, but the relief for Kendal was short lived as the lineout throw was then lost, to again put Kendal on the defence.
More Huddersfield forward charges followed, repelled by solid defence, but eventually a player went over from short range for the score, which was converted by outside half Hayden Quigley 7v0
It looked as if it could be a long afternoon for Kendal, but within two minutes they were back level. A Huddersfield clearance kick was charged down, and good handling looked as if it could set up a Kendal score, only for there to appear to be a deliberate knock on by Huddersfield, but there was no signal from the referee. It did not matter as Ben Dixon, playing on the right wing, got back and gathered the loose ball, then some excellent footwork saw him somehow weave through the Huddersfield defence to touchdown. Glen Weightman added the conversion 7v7 after a quarter of an hour.
Kendal lost scrum half Lewis Kincart to an injury and brought on Jordan Johnson.
Kendal had few chances to use the strong wind, but when they won a penalty at a scrum deep in their half, some quick thinking by Glen Weightman, saw him take the penalty quickly to put a massive kick to the opposite side of the field, into the Huddersfield twenty two, with Ben Dixon in pursuit.
The second Kendal score came from a handling error by Huddersfield, Glen Weightman gather the ball, then broke the defence and had Dini Noyo on his shoulder, and he just had enough speed to get to the line under the posts, with Weightman adding the conversion. 7v14.
The final score of the half came from another Huddersfield handing error. The ball was lost in the Kendal twenty two, and Mark Carruthers (?) put a long rolling kick to the other twenty two. The man back was a hooker who tried to run the ball, but when he was quickly tackled, he was isolated and failed to release the ball. Glen Weightman decided to take the points and added the conversion 7v17.
This was the half time score, which did not seem enough to defend, with the strong wind and rampant Huddersfield pack, but Huddersfield would have been disappointed to have turned ten points down despite having so much of the possession in the half.
For a second week Kendal nerves were calmed by an early try in the second half. Ben Dixon made a powerful run down the right wing. When he was stopped Matt Houghton was on hand and broke through several attempted tackles, and when he was stopped on the line, Dan Greenwood was in support to go over in the corner for the try. Glen Weightman’s attempted touchline conversion into the wind was not far out. 7v22
Kendal then had to withstand another long period of pressure in their twenty two, with some excellent defence to hold Huddersfield out. Twice the referee played very long periods of advantage, before coming back for earlier penalties.
Dini Noyo was beaten on the left wing, but recovered to put in a try saving tackle, but it was high and dangerous, and the referee gave him a yellow card, but did not award a Penalty Try. This did not matter as Huddersfield opted for a scrum and drove the Kendal pack over the line for a score. Outside half Hayden Quigley added the conversion 14v22 with twenty minutes to play.
Kendal made a change with Joe Cook coming on for Jordan Johnson, and Glen Weightman moving to scrum half.
A man down Kendal stepped up a gear. Chris Evans burst through the defence and made good run but for once no one got in support.
Another Evans run did set up the bonus point try. After he had opened the Huddersfield defence, Danny Barker took the move on, and Steven Nelson finished it with the try under the posts for Glen Weightman to convert. 14v29.
The game was made safe two minutes later. Greg Wrathall took the restart kick and made a good break. This was taken on with a long run up the left wing by Mark Carruthers. When he was stopped Dan Greenwood was in support, and found Glen Weightman, for a trademark weaving run to score under the posts. He then converted his own try. 14v36
Jordan Johnson returned in place of Robbie Collinson (?) with Matt Houghton joining the front row (?) and Ben Dixon reverting to his normal position.
With five minutes to play Huddersfield added a third try from short range 19v36, but Kendal had the final score. Danny Barker forced a penalty when a Huddersfield player failed to release the ball in the tackle, Good handling set up Steven Nelson, who with a change of pace, and hint of a sidestep, beat the defence to score, with Glen Weightman again adding the conversion. 19v43.
The referee played on, but Kendal ran the clock down and after several checks by Glen Weightman, when the referee confirmed time was up, the ball came back to Weightman who tapped it into touch, to end the game.
Despite their lowly position, Huddersfield YMCA showed why they had got their win last week, and it required a strong second half performance from Kendal to ensure they did not add a second. As at Mint Bridge their pack had long periods in control, but their back division looked less sure, especially after losing their fullback to injury, whilst their defence was again too easy to breach, but you could certainly see them pulling off another shock before the end of the season, if any team underestimates the threat.
It was another win based on a solid defensive display, but as the team play more together it is clear the support play, which was so often missing earlier in the season, is now there, with several tries coming about as there were several players in support, to keep the ball moving, when tackles came in.
Your Kentdale Kendal Man of the Match : Steven Nelson
Two tries and top of the list for a second week - did the finish for the second try tip the balance ?
Greg Wrathall was a few votes back, and was one of eleven players in total who picked up a vote
|William Burns-Smith||15||Chris Park|
|Tom Clough||14||Ben Dixon|
|Jordan Bloem||13||Mark Carruthers|
|Charles Burnett||12||Danny Barker|
|Tom Bulloch||11||Dini Noyo|
|Hayden Quigley||10||Glen Weightman|
|Sam Clews||9||Lewis Kincart|
|Sam Slater||1||Glenn Chesher|
|Ben Hill||2||Robbie Collinson|
|Stuart Dyke||3||Logan Flett|
|Harry Garside||4||Chris Evans|
|Jack Housley||5||Greg Wrathall|
|Mark Davidson||6||Steven Nelson|
|James Tindall||7||Matt Houghton|
|Harry Scholes||8||Dan Greenwood|
|Andrew Appleby||sub||Tom Moulton (u)|
|Sean Barrett||sub||Joe Cook|
|Callum Crossley||sub||Jordan Johnson|
|= = =||= = =||= = =||HALF TIME||40||7||17|
|Con||Huddersfield YMCA||10||Hayden Guigg||59||14||22|
|= = =||= = =||= = =||FULL TIME||86||19||43|