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Home > News > Prudhoe & Stocksfield 31 - Seaham 3
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Your News Prudhoe & Stocksfield 31 - Seaham 3
11
APR

Seaham got off to a strong start against their Northumbrian hosts and applied much of the pressure in the opening ten minutes. The hosts tried to run the ball down the wings at every opportunity but fine tackling by the Harbour men held them at bay.

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Mark Wilson put in a solid hit in the 4th minute and a ruck was formed. Wilson remained on his feet and wrestled for the ball but his opposite man prevented fair release and was penalised. Andy Hogwood lined up a kick from 40 metres out and dissected the posts neatly for a 3-0 lead.

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Seaham's lead was short-lived however as a missed tackle four minutes later let the Prudhoe winger in at the left corner for a try. The conversion drifted narrowly to the left of the posts so Seaham restarted trailing 5-3.

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Seaham prop Dave Drinkwater was sin-binned for a silly offence in the 10th minute. The hosts continually went over the top at the breakdowns and one of their flankers found himself lying over the ball with no apparent effort made to roll away. Drinkwater instinctively attempted to ruck him out of the way but referee Michael Harriott adjudged the errant prop to be raking and issued a yellow card.

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Seaham held their ground well with young prop Matt Jackson earning special praise for a solid display. Steve Meir stepped up to the front row in Drinkwater's absence and formed a steady platform. Although the scrum was under a little bit of pressure, John Dawson maintained a safe pair of hands from number 8 and ensured that scrum half Grant Dixon received quality ball each time. Seaham's cohesive defence ensured that their hosts were shut out for the full ten minutes until their numbers were restored to full strength.

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The hosts stretched their lead in the 21st minute when Andrew Short missed a tackle and let his opposite man in for a try in the bottom left corner. He then ran under the posts to make the conversion attempt easier. This proved to be a wise move as the conversion was slotted for a 12-3 lead.

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Andy Hogwood sprung his thumb in the 27th minute and needed some sustained treatment before emerging with heavy strapping. Two minutes later the hosts worked an excellent try when their dominant outside centre drew two defenders before popping a perfect pass to his right winger, who cantered under the posts for a converted try to stretch the lead to 19-3.

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Seaham skipper John Dixon, playing out of position at fly half, set away on a strong run just before the break that took him from just outside of his 22 deep into the hosts territory. He was tackled five metres short of the try line but managed to offload. Unfortunately, flanker Ben Bell was a little heavy-footed with his attempted fly-hack and the ball went into touch to earn the hosts a reprieve. This proved to be the last major incident of the first half.

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Half Time: Prudhoe & Stocksfield (19) SEAHAM (3)

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Seaham made a substitution at the interval with a totally unfit Andrew Short making way for a man twice his age, Steve Wilkinson. Seaham coach John Whitehead stirred his troops up with some wise words and they flew out of the blocks in the second half.

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Rookie winger Chris Bland learned a lesson the hard way on 48 minutes when the hosts fly half launched an up and under from near the halfway line. Rather than catch the ball and call a mark, he allowed it to bounce and the chasing winger caught it and crossed for a try to stretch the lead to 24-3.

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The following half-hour was played equally with Seaham's forwards shading the scrums and lineouts and the hosts' backs enjoying the better of the play in the loose. Matty Jackson capped off a strong performance in the set pieces with a couple of bustling runs that were enough to earn him the Man of the Match.

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However, it was the hosts who made the last impression on the scoreboard when they worked a move up the right wing and crossed for their fifth try of the day. Following the successful conversion, Mr Harriott blew for time and the Prudhoe & Stocksfield contingent celebrated their promotion.

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Full Time: Prudhoe & Stocksfield (31) SEAHAM (3)

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Seaham's Neil Roseberry remained upbeat in spite of the reversal...

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"I thought our lads played very well today and the scoreline does not in any way reflect the pattern of play. There were a lot of positives taken from this game. The fact that we gave them such a hard game is a testament to how far we've come in the past few months."

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"Out of all of our lads today, I think young prop Matty Jackson deserves a special mention. He seems to have turned a corner and has put in some rock solid performances in the front row over the past month or so. He thoroughly deserved his Man of the Match nomination today. All of his fellow players and the committee are delighted with his progress and I can see him making the position his own."

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