Cinderford 20-31 Macclesfield

Macclesfield Director of Rugby Geoff Wappett highlighted the performance of winger Jack Moorehouse as the difference as his side beat Cinderford 31-20 at the Beavis memorial ground.

Moorehouse, a natural centre; scored a try, set up another, and caused headaches for the home side’s defence throughout the game despite playing out of position out wide.

Richard Hughes, Billy Robinson, Alan Marsh and Edd Stobart were also on the scoresheet, while Ross Winney returned to the starting line-up to contribute eight points of his own.

Wappett said: “He [Moorehouse] was superb today. He caused them a lot of problems with ball in hand and was strong in defence.

“His try turned the match right in our favour. We were winning but they [Cinderford] were gaining control, but the score put us back firmly in the driving seat.”

Blues got off to a sluggish start, and allowed their hosts to dominate possession early on.

The possession was converted into points after just three minutes, Lloyd Stapleton crossing for Cinderford before Rory Teague added a simple conversion.

Macc didn’t lie down though and replied after ten minutes when skipper Tom Eaton’s box kick was collected by Tom Davenport before Hughes finished a well-worked move to put his side back in the match.

Moorehouse continued to pressure the home defence and was almost through for a score after a brilliant run, only to be tackled at the last minute, before being penalised for holding on.

The next two blues scores came from the forwards though; prop Billy Robinson bundling over after a strong drive from the pack, and experienced lock Alan Marsh scoring after Matt O’Regan chipped on from Moorehouse’s initial line break.

Winney converted well, but a penalty from Teague for the home side left the match delicately poised, 19-10 at half time.

As with the first half, the second got off to an equally sluggish start with neither side taking any initiative in the game, and just like in the opening minutes, Macc were caught napping once again to allow their opponents to pull to within five points thanks to George Evans.

Moorehouse replied with a try six minutes later to extend his side’s lead once more; Eaton showing magnificent skill to offload inside to the winger who ran through the creaking Cinderford defence to score and seal Macc’s 11th try bonus point of the season.

Winney added the extras and the match was seemingly beyond doubt when Moorehouse broke the home side’s line for the umpteenth time in the match, setting up Stobart as Blues scored two tries in three minutes.

Stapleton added his second try of the match for Cinderford with ten minutes to go, but it was merely a consolation as Macc held on for a much deserved five points.

Wappett added: “The half back pairing worked very well today. The control we had with Tom [Eaton] at nine and Ross [Winney] at Ten was fantastic.

“We’ve played all the teams in the league now and I’m happy with our record, especially the amount of bonus points we have achieved. It’s things like that that really make the difference at the end of the season.”

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