Sandbach 3’s 29 – 17 Macclesfield 4’s

An enormous game for Macclesfield against the league leaders;  Sandbach have dominated this division all season fielding a young well drilled and enthusiastic team.

The visitors lost the toss and were forced to play the first half uphill on a steeply sloping pitch against a strong wind.  They defended  very well but still turned round having conceded three tries and 17 points in arrears.  It says much for the team spirit that they won the second half with Sandbach’s last score in the final minute when Ryan Brown’s team at only 3points behind were looking for a score, all their players were in offensive positions but the ball went loose so with no cover a speedy young winger won the foot race going the full length of the field to touch down between the posts.

Rod McLeod had a huge game scored two tries the first from a rolling maul but the second an excellent individual storming run. The other try by Keiran Merriman the no 8 really brought Macclesfield back into the game to set up the last quarter of pressure by the 4th team.

Brown had been welcomed back after missing the previous two but showed no I’ll effects of his virus.  Indeed the back three who included Richard Hogg and Michael Moore as well all defended the high ball and attacked outstandingly.

Jack Pearce and Zane Townsville as forward breakaways caught the eye because of their tackling and work in the rucks.  Turning over the ball in rucks is often unseen but Jeremy Bostock, Keith O’Brian and Mike Dale do such a lot of this hard slog winning turn overs and delaying fast ball by the opposition.

Rufus Dixon has shown his segacity all season with his throwing into the line outs, always able to compensate for strong winds.  Of the half backs James Parsons was brilliant a wonderful replacement for Andrew Foster who’s knee injury could keep him out for the remainder of the season; Ben Heginbotham was again an excellent fulcrum keeping the backs supplied with quick clean ball.

Simon Street is so adaptable, this week as centre alongside Aled Williams, these two kept bringing the ball into Macclesfield’s big strong pack.

The two impact players off the bench were Steve Mannion and Craig Price, showed their experience and versatility, coming on out of position but making positive contributions.

The side has another week off and then it’s back to Congleton whom they have beaten twice already this season, let’s hope for the hat trick.


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