Fylde Saracens v Sandbach 2nds
Report by Rupert Cobain
The Mighty Sarries played host to Sandbach who were sitting 2nd in the league after losing just one game this season. Due to the physical encounter experienced in the previous meeting of the teams, the Sarries management brought in some old wily faces – Nick Smith, Rick Frith and Club Chairman Roger Banks – who were willing to add some ‘beef’ to the pack.
Sandbach scored early but this did this did not deter the Sarries who found themselves camped in the Sandbach 22m area. Alas the Sarries could not convert this pressure into points and Sandbach scored on the counter to finish the half leading 12-0.
From the restart, you could see the Sarries were fired up and meant business, the first two tackles leading to knock-ons and a Fylde put in at the resulting scrums. The Sarries had be dominant in the scrum all game, with The Jurassic Pack of Nick Smith and Rick Frith returning to give the Sandbach front row a torrid time. From the resulting scrum, Craig ‘I’ll give you one game’ Aikman made a break from the base and provide a beautiful offload for Ciaran Johnson to crash over under the sticks. CJ making the extras 7-12 GAME ON!!
The Sarries tails were now up and they were fighting tooth and nail for every single ball with Luke Clitheroe, Adam Hiles, Steven Billy James and Richard Appleyard causing a constant nuisance at the break down and turning ball over. In one of these turnovers, Christian Williams was able to make a break from inside his own 22, jinking past a few Sandbach tacklers before offloading to Tom Hodgkins in full stride. Tom was able to break through the defensive line into midfield with just the full back to beat. With the fullback drawing closer, Tom provided the perfect pass to Phil Dearness to sprint clean through and score. This was a huge moment as it was the first time Tom Hodgkins had actually passed the ball and also it was Phil’s 1st try for the Sarries!!
The conversion was missed ,scores level 12-12.
Both teams fought hard for the ball and it was Sandbach who made inroads, stealing a Fylde line out and scoring underneath the sticks, conversion made, 12-19, 4 minutes left.
Captain for the day Jay Harrison, gave a rousing speech how this is the Sarries game and it is in their grasp and the Mighty Sarries cannot give up…..
The Sarries continued to pile the pressure on and were forcing the Sandbach line backwards. With this pressure, Phil Dearness pushed out of the line and intercepted an errant pass! After a couple of juggles, Phil was able to gather and break free and score underneath the sticks! CJ added the extras, 19-19!! What a time and game to score your first and second ever tries for the Sarries!
FT – 19-19
It was a pleasure to be involved and watch today’s game. The Sarries put in an absolute effort and grafted hard for the full 80mins against a very well drilled side. They should take great pride in this result!