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Home > News > Washington 14 - Seaham 17
Your News Washington 14 - Seaham 17

Seaham travelled to Biddick for a local derby match with an added edge. Due to a fixture backlog caused by the poor weather at the beginning of the season, it was played as a league and cup double-header as Seaham looked to defend the County Junior Plate.

The game was played at a frenetic pace throughout the opening minutes with both sides throwing the ball wide and attacking at pace. Washington had the first scoring opportunity when they crossed Seahams try line on 9 minutes but their winger failed to put downward pressure on the ball whilst showboating and was adjudged to have knocked the ball on; resulting in a Seaham scrum five metres out. The hosts crossed the whitewash again three minutes later but a despairing tackle by Gary Lynn caused another knock-on and Seaham were off the hook again.

Seaham took the ascendancy from the restart and set camp in Washingtons 22 for a 15-minute spell. Some valiant defence from the hosts kept the rampant Harbour pack at bay but resulted in several kickable penalties in the 16th and 20st minutes. Unfortunately, veteran fly half Dave Davison spurned both opportunities so the game remained scoreless.

Seaham were left to rue their missed chances in the 28th minute when the hosts broke away from their own half and broke away down the left flank to cross the line once again. They made it third time lucky with a touchdown under the posts. The added conversion took them 7-0 ahead.

After a strong display in which he terrorised the opposition backs with some surging runs, rookie wing Chris Bland was forced to leave the field with a leg injury. He was replaced by gnarled forward Steve Sanderson; resulting in a reshuffle in the ranks. Andrew Baxter moved from hooker out into the backs, John Dawson moved from number eight into the front row and Sanderson assumed the back row role vacated by Dawson.

The former Darlington Mowden Park star tightened up the Seaham pack and added some cohesion to their forward drives. Pack leader Stuart Barrass also ushered his troops towards the Washington line but the hosts continued to defend valiantly and ensured that no further scores were registered before the interval.

Half Time: Washington (7) SEAHAM (0)

Scott Anderson replaced Matty Jackson in the front row at the break. Seaham took the early initiative in the opening stages of the second half and spent long spells in the Washington 22. Ben Bell came agonisingly close to opening Seahams account on 45 minute but had the ball knocked out of his hands in the process of grounding. Referee Carl Hall adjudged that a Washington defender had transgressed whilst competing for the ball so the Harbour were awarded a penalty. Before the restart, big second row Stu Barrass was forced into the blood bin with a deep gash on his head and replaced by Henry Brace.

Washington managed to weather the storm once again but were unable to resist the pressure in the 52nd minute when Seaham finally opened their account. A lineout in the hosts 22 was taken safely by towering second row Michael Bland and a rolling maul was improvised. The ball was taken right to the try line by the visitors pack before scrum half Grant Dixon burrowed over for his fourth try of the season. Dave Davisons successful conversion tied the scores at 7-7.

Seahams lead proved to be short-lived however as Washington managed to break through their lineout and turn over possession. The ball was shipped to their winger, who proceeded to turn the Harbour defence inside out before touching down under the posts for a converted try and a 14-7 lead with 55 minutes gone.

The visitors made a substitution just before the hour with Ray Wilkins replacing Andy Hogwood. He almost made an instant impact when he fed full back Graeme Steel and set him away up the right wing on a jinking run. He crossed the line but was tackled. There was speculation as to whether or not he actually managed to ground the ball but Mr Hall adjudged that he had been held up.

Seaham registered their second try of the day on 61 minutes when their forwards rumbled a rolling maul over the line and Henry Brace emerged from the bottom of the pile with a huge grin after notching his fourth try of the season. Davisons conversion drifted left so they trailed 14-12 going into the final 18 minutes.

The visitors managed to snatch the lead on 69 minutes when prop Gary Lynn (below) touched down for a try following yet another trademark rolling maul. However, the conversion attempt was narrowly missed once again so the stage was set for a tense final ten minutes with the Harbour leading 17-14.

Washington launched some blistering runs downfield but staunch defence by full back Steele earned Seaham several Get out of Jail cards. His efforts were matched by skipper John Dixon, centre partner Mark Wilson and wings Tisseman and Baxter. The hosts speedy backs continued to hammer away but Seahams forwards took a stranglehold and kept the ball tight for the closing minutes until Mr Hall blew for time.

Final Score: Washington (14) SEAHAM (17)

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