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Home > News > Annual memorial match survives scare
Your News Annual memorial match survives scare

The annual Memorial Match in aid of former Seaham player Dave Giblin was placed in jeopardy when guests Houghton cried off on the Thursday before the fixture. Not to be outdone, Seaham's players - with over 40 men available - were able to field 2 teams and play the fixture between themselves. Ryan Giblin (son of the late Dave) captained the red team with club coach John Whitehead leading the yellows.

The game kicked off at a furious pace with both sides going at it hammer and tongs. There were scoring opportunities aplenty for both sides but, by some quirk of fate, it was young Ryan Giblin who was first on the scoresheet. Following a quick burst down the left touchline, fly half Dave Davison fed a neat pass out to the flying winger and he showed John Whitehead a clean pair of hesls to cross in the corner and go under the posts for the first try of the day. Jack McCallum converted to take the lead to 7-0.

Shortly afterwards, grizzled veterans Dave Davison and Steve Meir, both playing for the reds, had a clash of heads. The result was that the veteran fly half lost yet another tooth and the seasoned flanker was left with chink in his thinning scalp once the offending tooth was removed.

The more experienced yellows took the ascendency from the restart with Dave Drinkwater, Steve Topping and Dan Cahill in the thick of everything. Rob Hebron took a high ball and set up a rolling maul, which was shunted 35 metres towards the goal line. The referee Adam Thompson-Binks signalled for a try and Steve Topping emerged with the ball and a huge grin. However, looking to claim his eighth try of the season, Dave Drinkwater jovially disputed the score. Either way, the try stood but the conversion was missed so the reds retained their 7-5 lead.

Paul King, playing at fly half, took the yellows into the lead just before the break when he sailed through a sea of flailing arms to touch down to the left of the posts. Unfortunately for his side, prodigal son Lee Phillips shot the conversion attempt wide of the mark so the lead remained at 10-7.

The other outstanding memory of the half was a catchweight contest between Stuart Barrass and John Whitehead. The coach didn't take too kindly to being cleaned out rather late at a ruck and a bout of fisticuffs ensured. With neither party able to land a half-decent shot, the large crowd of spectators were left in stitches.

Half Time: Reds (7) Yellows (10)

The second half followed a similar pattern with the reds making some good inroads into the opposition half and the more experienced yellows gaining good territory courtesy of their forwards. Guest number 8 Rob Hebron enjoyed a running battle with Grant Dixon and managed to put him off his usual game. However, the fiery flanker managed to rampage around the pitch alongside Ben Bell and put in some huge hits.

Hebron managed to salvage a brace of tries midway through the second half after making the most of a solid platform to stretch the lead to 20-7. Although the game carried on as a keenly contested spectacle, with everyone getting a game, there were no further scores registered. Nevertheless, with plenty of good rugby - and an endless amount of fractious incidents - the crowd were well entertained and given good value for money.

Full Time: Reds (7) Yellows (20)

Following the game, all members adjourned indoors for an evening of entertainment and fund-raising. The attending Giblin family were delighted to note that their rugby friends had raised in excess of 500 on the day. With the rugby players taking a bucket around the Harbour on the evening, a further heavy sum is anticipated. Once all of the funds have been tallied, Diabetes UK will profit from a rather large cheque.

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