Macclesfield 10 – 46 Rosslyn Park

Macclesfield travelled to 4thplace Rosslyn Park on Saturday and were beaten 46-10 after conceding five tries in the second half.

Youngster George Baxter and Blues top try-scorer Elliot Brierley added their names to the score sheet, but were only a consolation as the Londoners proved why they are sitting near the top of the league.

Rosslyn Park held possession from the kick-off, early tackles from Martin Kent and Matt O’Regan helped to break down the attacks and turn the ball over, however the home side looked a constant threat with impressive handling and pace from their backs.

After ten minutes fly-half Sam Katz scored a penalty kick to take an early lead, Rosslyn Park then going back on the offensive straight from the restart.

Hugo Ellis was able to score the first try of the afternoon after a quick break from one of Park’s wingers was defended desperately on the goal line, however Ellis powered over to go 8-0 up.

O’Regan was unlucky to have a kicked clearance blocked, however was able to pick the ball up and carry it for a further five yards as the Blues looked to take control of possession.

After 25 minutes Macclesfield went down to 14 men as Dave Marwick saw yellow, and several minutes later Paul Mackey capitalised on the advantage after dummying a pass high up the field to cut inside and score down by the posts.

Katz was on-target with the conversion to give the home side a 15-0 lead going into half time.

One minute into the second half Rosslyn Park scored again, this time coming from Luke Campbell who surged over the line after quick passing down the left wing created gaps in the Blues defence.

A dangerous high tackle from Richard Boyle on Tom Davenport that cut short a surging run was met with a yellow card and gave the Blues the extra man to go forward.

Winger Ed Stobart looked threatening after going on a good run down the left wing, while replacement Matt King also came close with a promising break, however the Park defence stayed strong and denied the visitors their first points.

At the 50 minute mark Rosslyn Park scored two converted tries in quick succession, coming from Stephen Parsons and Captain Harry Rowland to give them the bonus point and go 34-0.

Macclesfield’s response came five minutes later, after strong pressure high up the field ended in substitute George Baxter diving over the line to score his first try of the season.

Parsons added his second of the game with ten minutes remaining and despite an ambitious tackle from Stobart at the goal line the home side stretched further into the lead.

Park’s last try came from winger David Vincent, who was lucky to pick up the ball in space after a Blues kick was blocked. Katz scored the conversion to take the score to 46-5.

Elliot Brierley scored his try at the final whistle, however failed to make a dent on the score-line as the match finished up at 46-10.

Blues Director of Rugby and Head Coach Geoff Wappett was disappointed with the score-line: “We were looking to get a point, but it’s always a difficult place to come to.

“We’ve won here before, but you have to be right on the top of your game to turn it your way. They’ve made several new signings from London Scottish and they made us look quite boylike.

“There were some pieces of play that we had that looked very good, but they weren’t often enough and they didn’t last long enough.

“Our own worst enemy was that we gave the ball up too easily, we didn’t have it long enough to really hurt them and that cost us most dearly.

“I was pleased with Matt King who came on in the second half, I was also pleased for George to get his try.

“It was good to see Ryan Parkinson play a full 80 minutes and he did some really good stuff, I know full well that with every game he plays he’ll get stronger.

“The game against Sedgley Park, we’re going to have to earn that whole performance. It has to be a big performance and it has to be a five-point win.

“If we’re not winning these home games then we’ll be in trouble, there is a run of games coming up that we really need to roll our sleeves up and take advantage of.”

Next week Macclesfield take on Sedgley Park at home in the rearranged fixture from before Christmas for a 3.00pm kick-off. If you can’t make it down the Priory Park follow the updates throughout the match here:

15 – Matt O’Regan, 14 – Ed Stobart, 13 – Elliot Brierley, 12 – Tom Davenport, 11 – Josh Fowles, 10 – Tom Eaton, 9 – Matt Rhodes, 1 – Tom Mantell, 2 – Sam Moss, 3 – Martin Kent, 4 – Matt Owen, 5 – Dean Williams, 6 – Dave Marwick, 7 – Ryan Parkinson, 8 – Frankie Barker,  16 – Dave Blackwell, 17 – Gavin Woods, 18 – Mike Finnemore, 19 – George Baxter, 20 – Matt King

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