South Lancashire and Cheshire League Division Three: Wallasey 24, Buxton 1st XV 7
BUXTON put in a gutsy performance as they lost 24-7 at league leaders Wallasey on Saturday.
The visitors were put under intense pressure from the start, with every man putting his body on the line, notably G.Passey who tackled everything in sight.
But as the Buxton scrum wheeled, the home side collected a try and added the conversion.
Buxton responded with intent, taking the ball deep into Wallasey’s half using a mix of the forwards’ and the backs’ brutality in contact.
However the referee gave the home side a breather by inexplicably penalising the visitors for wheeling their own scrum, five metres from the Wallasey line.
With the home side given possession they used it well to starve Buxton of the ball they craved.
Buxton maintained its resolute defence until the 25th minute when, with some deft hands from the home fly half setting up their centre, Wallasey found their way through an otherwise solid defence.
After the second score Buxton awakened and the match took a more balanced look with each side making inroads into the other’s half. Wallasey became the luckier of the two by scoring another penalty after finding no way through the resilient Buxton defence.
Those three points were the last scored of the half with the board 17-0 in the home side’s favour.
After the break Buxton started the stronger of the two sides with the problems in the scrum resolved and Wallasey’s ball retention suffering a lapse in quality.
However what the home side lacked in ball retention they made up for in defence, putting down each attempt at the line with strong tackling.
This is not to say Buxton were lacking with intent as the back division constantly probed and moved within striking distance with strong runs from Passey, Burford, Holliday, Mellor and Ives, ably supported by the back row of I. Scott, J. Degroot and S. Hodgson along with the likes of P.Storer, R. McCoy and B. Rosamund.
With 15 minutes to go the home side struck back after a ball that had been turned over was snaffled back by Wallasey and taken over the line for a score.
Buxton to their credit never gave up and their hard work paid off with good work in contact by Davies and Rabbits who powered forward under the direction of T.Sommerfield to provide a platform for the Buxton backs to work off.
A Burford took the chance well, bursting through the Wallasey defence for a score under the posts, with G. Mellor kicking the conversion.
The score unfortunately was only a consolation and the match ended 24-7 to Wallasey, but Buxton can be proud of their efforts.