HEMEL STAGS 8 NEWCASTLE THUNDER 56 hemelsta.champmodel.dyndns.info

18th June 2018



H/T 0-22

 This match saw these two sides face each other for the second time this season. Earlier in the year Thunder made the long journey down for a third round Challenge Cup tie and ran out winners by 74-0.

 The visitors got the scoreboard moving in the second set of the game with just three minutes on the clock. Hemel were caught offside and from the resulting penalty Liam Scott got the ball over the line next to the posts, his outstretched arm just making the whitewash. Hemel claimed he had made a double movement but after consulting his touch judges the referee awarded the try. Thomas Shaw made the first of eight conversions in the game to give Thunder an early six point lead.

 Shortly after that first try Hemel forward Patrick Burns had to be helped from the field with a game ending case of concussion. The first of several injuries to Hemel players in the match which meant they actually finished the day with only 12 fit players on the pitch.

 The next 15 minutes saw both sides have some good attacking spells then a missed tackle let Man of the Match Shaw go on a 50yd run finishing under the Hemel sticks which he easily converted himself. Five minutes later Thunder increased their lead, Young feeding Brown to go in at the left corner flag.  The final score of the half was on 31 minutes, a clever little grubber kick on the last being picked up by the impressive McGrath.

 The second half started much the same as the first with an early Thunder try scored by Dent. Next was possibly the try of the game for Shaw after a pass by Pointer and the game was starting to go away from the Stags but they then had a good spell of pressure on the Thunder line and were unlucky not to score on a couple of occasions, the best they got was a drop out under the posts.  It was penalties by the Stags, so often Hemel’s Achilles heel this season, that were the catalyst for Newcastle’s next two tries and then a good flowing series of Hemel passes near the Thunder line looked promising but the final pass was cleverly intercepted by McGrath who then ran the pitch long foot race to the other line and scored under the posts. 

The Stags did, deservedly, get a try with ten minutes remaining. Some good work by the very impressive Kadeem Williams caused confusion in the Newcastle defence and when they failed to deal with the bouncing ball Darren Forde took advantage to touch down.

 The final Newcastle try was scored  on 74 minutes and like their first, was a little dubious, the build up seeing what looked like a clear obstruction going unnoticed.  As the final hooter was about to sound, Darren Forde got his and Hemel’s second try, very similar to the first in it’s execution. It was certainly no more than they deserved.

Next week they face another tough game as they make the trip north to Workington.

HEMEL STAGS 8 NEWCASTLE THUNDER 56 hemelsta.champmodel.dyndns.info