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Harrogate 19 – 49 The Blues

Macclesfield ran out 19 – 49 victors away at Harrogate thanks to a rampant second half at The County Ground on Saturday.

The first half was loose and open, with Harrogate exerting a lot of pressure and winning the territorial battle. The home side took the lead with a try after 12 minutes but it didn’t take long for the Blues to hit back.

From the kick off Macclesfield charged up field thanks to a strong run from prop Tom Mantell, the ball was set up and Dave Marwick found space around the fringes and ran to the line unopposed, the conversion gave the Blues the lead.

Five minutes later the hosts were in again, this time the ball was knocked loose in the tackle and it dropped into the arms of Callum Irvine, the Harrogate fly half raced to the line from 60 metres to regain the lead.

The first half continued in chaotic fashion, Blues centre Ashley Platt-Hughes went dancing up field after the Harrogate score. That run set up his centre partner Elliot Brierley who produced a strong finish in the corner, carrying three defenders with him to bring the Blues back on level terms.

True to form, that didn’t last long and straight away Harrogate were celebrating their third try, but things were about to go downhill for the hosts and that was their final score. On the half hour mark the Blues were on the charge and looked like scoring when Harrogate’s Rob Adair killed the ball in the shadow of his own posts, which earned him a yellow card.

The Blues opted for the scrum and a nice inside ball from Jordan Brookes put Mike Finnemore in a bit of space and he stretched for the line to level the scores once again. A late first half try from Matt King gave the promotion chasers a 19 – 24 lead at half time after a whirlwind first 40.

Ten minutes in to the second half we saw the pick of the tries, an inside offload from Tom Eaton put winger King into space, he executed the simple overlap and fellow wing Louis Taylor raced away to extend the visitors’ lead.

Two Eaton penalties extended the Blues’ lead and when Harrogate had another man sent to the sin bin more tries came. Macclesfield rumbled toward the line and it was Marwick who was on hand to pick up his second try of the day and seal the win with ten minutes to go.

A lovely break from substitute scrum half George Baxter charged the Blues into the Gate’ 22 and it was left to fellow substitute Sam Rodman to power his way over from close range. That was the final play and the scores finished 19 – 49 sending the Blues to the top of the league.

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