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Home > News > Superb day at the Woodland as Fylde put in 10 try performance
Your News Superb day at the Woodland as Fylde put in 10 try performance

This was a superb dry, sunny but cool day at the Woodlands for Fylde in front of a big and appreciative crowd. There were lots of familiar faces in and around the clubhouse including including leading players from 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s & 90s who attended the former players reunion. England Coach and former Fylde scrum-half Brian Ashton, along with Bill Beaumont, made presentations of special commemorative club ties to almost 100 former and current payers who had notched 50 or more 1st team appearances.

Fylde's preparation was somewhat undermined by a late forced change in personnel. Centre Alex Hurst had picked up a knock playing for Sale U'19s at Northampton on Friday afternoon. At the last minute it was decided that he couldn't be risked so David Wiseman was called up to play at 12.

On the pitch, Fylde made their customary racing start. After 3 minutes from a ruck 30 metres out livewire scrum-half Craig Aikman saw a yawning gap in the Beverley fringe defence and shot through it like a greyhound out of a trap. Kicking into the wind fly-half Steve Nutt missed the conversion, as it happened his only failure of the afternoon.

After 16 minutes the ball was moved along the backline until it reached flying winger Oli Brennand. He burst infield past several defenders before off loading the ball neatly to the supporting Aikman who made the remaining 15m to the try line with ease. Nutt converted and Fylde led by 12-0.

A couple of minutes later Nutt & Wiseman exchanged passes and the fly-half slipped through the Beverley defensive line and dived over for Fylde's third try, his own conversion making it 19-0.

Despite the flood gates being in danger of opening, Beverley's pack performed strongly throughout and were in no mood to give possession away easily. They were equal to the Fylde eight in the tight exchanges although the home side shaded the line-outs. Bev no 8 James McKay was at the heart of most of their moves. Their controller in chief, player coach & fly-half Anthony Posa, had little time and space to create much. The Beverley backline looked rather one paced and predictable but the bullocking charges of big centre Richie Henderson kept the Fylde defence honest.

On 27 minutes Beverley attacked with purpose down the centre and some neat interplay between backs and forwards saw flanker Chris Brant break through to score a good try near the posts. Scrum-half Ian Armitage converted and the deficit was reduced to 7-19.

Coach Mark Nelson had promised his side would play an expansive game and the players followed the script to the letter. Fly-half Steve Nutt launched his backline on every possible occasion, with only some telling kicks to touch to break up play and gain territory.

So Fylde responded positively to Bev's score when they manufactured space for fullback John Armstrong down the right on halfway. He cleverly jinked past a couple of defenders and offloaded to the supporting Nick Royle. The speedster beat two defenders in brilliant fashion as he raced 40m for the corner. He reached for the try line and stretched out for the touchdown only for his foot to brush the touchline first.

But this was only momentary relief for Beverley. On 38 minutes Aikman raced clear again and notched his third try without a hand laid on him. Nutt converted and Fylde led by 26-7 at the break. The general consensus was that Beverley would probably struggle to control Fylde's all action play in the 2nd period, particularly as they tired.

It only took a couple of minutes of the 2nd half to see plaintive evidence of this forecast. Fylde moved the ball down their right and it reached Royle. The blond winger went outside one defender before driving infield scattering several others. He raced through from 35m to touch down under the posts. It was yet another example of the player's brilliant opportunism. What a favourite he has become at the Woodlands! Steve Nutt converted and Fylde were out of sight at 33-7 ahead.

Craig Aikman was a massive thorn in Beverley's flesh all afternoon with his darting running in open play. On 50 minutes he broke through centre field 25m from the Beverley try line. As he was caught by a defender he offloaded to supporting flanker & England Counties colleague Dave Wilks who drove over the line for his first try for the Club. Once again, Nutt converted easily for 40-7 lead.

Beverley battled away in determined style and Fylde's pack never had matters all their own way. They threatened to add to their score on a few occasions but the home side defended well and cleared the danger. By 69 minutes Fylde were again in control and threatening inside the Beverley 22m line. From a cleverly wheeled scrummage no 8 Sam Beaumont picked up from the base of the scrum and powered his way over for a good try. Nutt converted again.

It was all one way traffic now. On 73 minutes Nick Royle burst through once more for his second try. Nutt added the conversion and Fylde had a 54-7 lead.

Aikman again broke the defensive line of the visitors and the line was at his mercy. Selflessly he looked up for Richard Kenyon for the outside centre to score on his final appearance. But a defender got in the way and the immediate danger was cleared.

In the last minute of normal time a Fylde move broke down just inside the Beverley half. Oliver Brennand picked up the loose ball and scorched down the touchline past three defenders for a try in the left corner. Steve Nutt kicked a beautiful conversion from the touchline to add the extra points.

In injury time Fylde attacked once more down their right. Richard Kenyon received the ball in space and looked certain to celebrate his last try for the Club. Somehow a defender tackled him and he had to offload to Nick Royle who wandered over in the corner from 5m out for just about his easiest try of the season. This was his hat trick try and 20th try of the season.

If Kenyon was to get his name on the scoresheet then it had to be by taking the conversion from the touchline, the 'wrong' side for an occasional right footed kicker. Amazingly and suiting the occasion the kick sailed through the posts and the game was over, a great moment for this loyal and talented player.

Craig Aikman was named as the sponsors man of the match but he must have been pressed hard by Nick Royle and any of the hard working backrow of Dan Bowman, Dave Wilks and Sam Beaumont. Wilks is a very unselfish, unflashy player who is always doing the hard work at the breakdown, at the bottom of rucks and supporting runners all over the pitch.

A tribute should be made to referee Gareth Hodges who was hardly noticeable but managed the game very sympathetically. He was one of the best officials seen at the Woodlands this season.

Fylde's win ensures that they finish at least in 3rd place in National Three (North), their best achievement since relegation from National Two at the end of the 2002/3 season. Whether they go one better and finish as runners-up depends on Mowden Park's result at Morley next Saturday and Fylde's performance at champions Tynedale.

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