Rovers so close to local upset
Sharlston Rovers A .. 20
Upton .. 22
Pennine Division One
Rover’s just missed out on their first home points of the season with a 2 point defeat in this pulsating local derby against old rivals Upton. Following on from last week’s excellent victory the Rovers youngsters took the field full of confidence and took the game to the visitors from the off.
Rovers went close through Shaw and Hatfield before Upton made the most of a mistake in the Rovers line when big centre Froggettt crashed over for the opening score on 12 minutes. Rovers again came back strongly and after some good work from Dodson and Bettinson Hatfield broke through to score with Hill tagging on the extras to put Rovers in the lead on 18 minutes.
The game then centred on defence with both sides in top form and neither wanting to give any advantage there were some terrific tackling displays on show with Hill, Gallagher and Whitehouse leading the way for the home side. Of the few chances that were created Rovers were unfortunate not to score through Edwards and Hawkins while at the other end Hatfield and Taylor both pulled off superb cover tackles to deny the visitors.
Rovers were quick off the mark in the 2nd period and an excellent move involving Gallagher and Hampshire saw Hill crash over for a self-converted score to increase Rovers lead on 45 minutes. Defences were still on top at this stage with both sides showing their determination and it was not until the almost the hour mark before the next score was registered when Upton broke through and the clever support play from Beal saw him crash over for a converted score.
Rovers suffered injury setbacks losing key players and Upton made the most by taking the lead on 65 minutes when catching the home side napping close to the line with a converted score and crucially tagging on a penalty effort 2 minutes later following an infringement at the play the ball by Rovers which ultimately was the match winning score.
Rovers reduced the arrears when hard work from Palmer and Edwards was rewarded with a score for Whitehouse on 71 minutes to bring the home side within 2 points. Upton extended the lead when scoring out wide on 75 minutes after stretching the home defence and Rovers went into the last 5 minutes desperately looking for a way to salvage the match.
Good work saw Rovers win a scrum in good field position and a clever well-rehearsed move saw Taylor crash over but crucially too far out for the conversion leaving the home side desperate to level in the closing minute.
Rovers tried hard from the restart but there was to be no glory today for the home side as Upton hung on for their victory.
Rovers will take a lot of positives from the match as there were some good performances from individuals and as a team they seem to be progressing ion the right direction with only a matter of time before they get the results they deserve.
Best for the Rovers side were Hill, Bettinson and Hatfield with Whitehouse taking the Boomerang bar sponsored man of the match award for an excellent effort on the day. Rovers will be looking to continue with their improved performances in the next game as they travel to Birkenshaw, where they will be looking to upset the established Division 1 side.
Players meet at 12-00 am at the club house, bus leaves 12-45 for a 2-30pm kick off