Macclesfield 58 – Kirkby Lonsdale 17

By David Wilkinson

It has been a very difficult season for Kirkby Lonsdale; the effects of Covid, and a number of senior players retiring, meant that their 1st XV this season has been a young and inexperienced group of players. They came into the game without a win this season, but after scoring 17 points against Stockport they had gained some confidence in their ability to score, and it didn’t take them long to demonstrate it. Macclesfield won the early exchanges and territory, but after a not straight at the lineout Kirkby’s Josh Ree put in a monstrous 50-22 kick. The Kirkby chasers were first to the ball, and Macclesfield were caught napping, as the ball was thrown-in quickly for a try that was unopposed, the visitors were 7 points to the good, with barely 4 minutes on the clock, and Macclesfield still in the changing room.

Brendan Berry bags the first

From the restart Macclesfield worked their way up-field, through a succession of penalties, the last one resulting in a lineout on the 22. The catch and drive was clinical and Brendan Berry pulled it back to 5 – 7. From the restart Berry was held-up, which created a good attacking scrum for the Cumbrians. Number 10 Josh Ree, looped his Centre and when the ball reached the right wing, he was there the quickest, to pick up the ball from the tackle, and waltz over for a 5 – 14 lead; it was two scores from barely two phases. There was more to come, Kirkby put the Macc back-field under pressure from a kick, winning a 5 metre scrum, and when Macc infringed they grabbed the 3 points, they had now amassed the 17 points to equal the previous week’s tally after just 15 minutes. Ben Wade’s warning of: “Any team can beat anyone on the day”, will have been ringing in the Macc lads ears!

Danny Martin on the burst

Possession changed sides several times, with Seb Pemberton stealing a lineout at two, Danny Martin threw a huge, looping pass out to Louis Singleton at 10, for Terence Babarinsa to make good ground before the ball was slickly passed out to Tom Jennings, at full tilt, in support on the right wing; he had no problem beating the cover and grabbing all 7 points for himself; it had been the best bit of rugby so far. There was more to come, Macc were straight back on attack, Sam Adu made good ground on the left, and when the ball came back right, Tom Burden was on the charge, catching the ball behind him, which was trapped against his buttock! Somehow he evaded the tackler and managed to juggle it into his hands for a 19 – 17 lead.

Seeing double as James Oliver finishes the second

The next score couldn’t have been simpler; from a scrum 40 metres out. Danny Martin fed Harry Oliver wide on the right; Harry glided past the cover, before passing back inside to twin brother James in support, and another score to make it 24 – 17. The rest of the half was scoreless, as Macclesfield put several good attacks together, but each time they came to nothing through what can only be described as sloppy execution.

Terence Babarinsa scorches through the gap for his first for Macc

Carl Droy came on in the second half at hooker, for his 1st team debut. Although Macclesfield had a penalty turned over for pushing after the whistle, they won the resulting lineout. Brendan Berry made excellent ground cutting through the defence, Burden carried the move on, but the final pass in front of the posts was fumbled. Kirkby managed to put a few phases together in the middle of the park, but most of it was sideways, they infringed and were marched back a further 10 when someone voiced a different interpretation. Tom Jennings kicked into the 22, and the lineout was won at the tail by Burden, who was stopped just short; from the ruck Terrence Babarinsa ran a clever line, against the grain, and was over without a hand being laid upon him, 31 – 17.

Elliot Alston tricks the tacklers for his try

Kirkby infringed again after the restart, with Macclesfield kicking deep into the visitor’s half. The ball was played off the top from a shortened lineout, to Harry Harding on the charge who slipped it to Berry before the contact; Brendan again made good yards before feeding Elliot Alston who’s subtle dummy was sufficient to put off the would be tacklers, the gap grew to 36 – 17.

James Oliver bursts through the tackles for his second try

Kirkby managed to get a period of possession after the restart with their 10 Josh Ree making a good break, but the supporting player knocked-on before the line was reached. Macclesfield put a series of attacks together, but again the attacks fizzled out with knock-ons and some poor passes. Harry Harding had been given a rest with Max Dempsey coming on at Wing Forward. Macclesfield attacked right from the next scrum, Harry Oliver beat the first defender before making good ground, but was tackled whilst trying to make the pass to Alex Jakubowski, the ball was fumbled but Macc would have another feed in a few minutes. This time they were clinical, first Harry Oliver charged and when stopped Louis Singleton fed James Oliver on the charge, who made no mistake to take it to 41.

Broster had come back on for Babarinsa in the Centre, when Macclesfield went through their best period of mistake-free phases of the game, switching left and right as they progressed towards the scoreboard end. From the 22 Singleton delayed his pass on a diagonal run to the right, before looping the ball to Harry Oliver, who juggled it in the air before dotting down for the 8th try, 46 – 17.

Sam Adu rounds the defence to finish off a fabulous try

Within a few minutes from the restart Kirkby were penalised 3 times in succession, James Oliver tapped quickly and the ball was spun-out, rapidly and accurately to Sam Adu on the Left Wing, who had sufficient space to finish off the move and take the score to 51.

Alex Jakubowski makes sure as he gets his first 1st team score

Macclesfield attacked again from the restart, Captain James Oliver went on another charge down the middle, before the ball was whipped out to the right. Tom Jennings had joined the line and timed his pass perfectly for Alex Jakubowski to finish with pace; Jennings would slot this one over, 5 metres out from the touchline, for a final score of 58 – 17.

It wasn’t the ideal game to precede the challenge facing the team on Saturday at Lymm, but it did have some benefits; this is what Head Coach, Ben Wade, had to say: “We got through the game with no injuries and the likes of, James Cross, Rhys Davies, Charlie Attis, Phil Laing and Lloyd Smith Coates got a rest, Burden and Alston aren’t available, otherwise we have a full squad to pick from. Blackburn in second place now has a game in hand against Lymm, and Lymm have no easy games left to play. They (Lymm) will be desperate to get the win. We know that we will need to play the full 80, and if we can stay in touch we will have a good chance”.

Wadey believes that the team are now strong in all facets of the game, they have the ability to beat any team in this league on the day; if, they can play a game that maximises their possession, and are more clinical in the red-zone; the players know this, and it will be their aim on Saturday. Come and enjoy the action at Lymm on Saturday, it’s a really big game and the boys will be grateful for all the support that they can get, it’s a 3.00pm kick-off.


Macclesfield Senior Colts 24 – West Park St. Helens 7

By Phil Mason

Macclesfield Senior Colts hosted West Park St. Helens in the League Shield Quarter Final on Sunday, and managed to make it 2 from 2 since the Christmas break, but not without some challenges!

Macclesfield took the kick off, and Park gathered well, taking the ball into a hard contact.  A tough couple of phases with Park pushing Macclesfield into their own half when  Koby Wilkinson turned the ball over in a ruck, with Ollie Carter (9) flicking out to Jim Parker (10) who found a flying Max Woods who three quarters of the pitch, down the wing, to take the first points of the afternoon, converted (7-0).

Park were having none of it, and turned on the pace from the restart, winning the ball back and pushing into Macclesfield’s territory pressuring hard for a good 5 minutes, but ultimately knocking-on 7 metres out; Macclesfield took the scrum and finally Roan Elliot managed to clear the lines.

The battle ensued in the mid-field, with both teams contesting well, neither giving ground. Woods made a break down the wing, when caught the ended up with Ollie Jennings who sadly came off the worse in a clash, suffering a bleeding nose; on came Fin McNicholas to replace him for his debut match.

Macclesfield took the penalty restart and picked up the pace, out again to Woods only to be fumbled giving the scrum to park followed by a penalty to park for a Macclesfield offside. Park took the lineout short, tried to run, but turned over by Macclesfield who, somehow were confused about the time on the clock, kicking to touch thinking it was time for oranges – it was not!

Park had a lineout deep in the Macclesfield danger zone, but it was judged not straight; scrum to Macc with two evenly matched packs and the mysterious clock ticking down. Macclesfield went through numerous phases, as the clock ticked-down to half time, having resisted 15 minutes of pressure from West Park St Helens.

The second half kicked off, and it was anyone’s game; if anything Park had been piling on the pressure and were unlucky not to convert some of this into scores, testament to the Macclesfield defence.

Macclesfield grabbed back possession, and Park let their discipline drop slightly, giving away two penalties allowing Macclesfield to gain ground.  Roan Elliot took a high ball, put on the gas and Noah Wolstenholme chipped a cheeky ball over the Park defence, finding Hugo Duckworth taking it perfectly to go over for the second score – 12-0.

Again the sides squared up, switching possession however Macclesfield managed to break and gain territory into the Park 22, with some fast hands and great passing,  Roan Elliot found himself with the ball in the middle of the Park pack and he somehow managed to find a gap to sprint through for the third 19 – 0.

Sam Wisdom goes over for the Colts’ final try

Credit to Park, from the restart the pressure came on again.  It was all in the Macc red zone with Park pushing hard for at least 10 minutes, but to Macclesfield defence held up, just as Park gave away a penalty allowing Macclesfield to clear their lines. From the lineout, fast hands sent the ball out to Sam Wisdom who ran in for the fourth 24 – 0.

As the clock counted down, Park were determined to score, they piled on the pressure, and sustained it. A quick penalty saw Macclesfield caught out, being not 10. Park kicked to the corner, they took the lineout, and forced their way over for a consolation score; an excellent conversion preceded the final whistle, with a 24 – 7 score-line, which could have been different had Park taken all of their opportunities.

A superb match showing the future of our Rugby with Macclesfield Captain Roan Elliot announced Man of the Match for Macclesfield.


The MaccRugbyTV cameras were at pre season training with the 1st XV again this week and we caught up with the currently injured Tom Jennings. Many thanks to East Cheshire Pressure Washing for sponsoring Tom again this season. #macclesfield #rugby #local #community #rugbyfamily #Nat2West National League Rugby ... See MoreSee Less
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The Macclesfield 2ndXV is in safe hands with Russ Tomlinson taking the reins for a 3rd year, as he looks to build on the success of the last 2 campaigns!! Russ is vital to developing our squad and nurturing the lads coming through the pathway.Isaac makes the big step into coaching as 2nd XV player coach and will provide valuable insight to the players using his extensive experience.Ollie church joined last season from Sheffield tigers having previously been with Hartpury college and brings valuable experience from National 2 North to the side while looking to break into the 1s team!Good luck to all 3 this season 👍🏉 ... See MoreSee Less
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