By L Hammond
A late comeback wasn’t enough for promotion chasing ‘Field as they fell by one point to Beverly.
Beverley raced into an insurmountable lead, scoring 20 points in the first 20 minutes as they blew Huddersfield well and truly out of the water.
Huddersfield did register a late fight back, spurred on by a red-card for Beverley number six Joseph Pickets. They engineered two last minute opportunities to seize the lead but both kicks were missed, leaving the final score 30-29 to Beverley.
The match started at an electric pace with both Beverley centre’s on the scoreboard within the first ten minutes. The first try was scored by Beverley 13 Ruchard Bussy, as Beverley played their way into the Huddersfield twenty-two with ease.
Huddersfield’s narrow defence was outflanked on several occasions leaving lots of running room for the Beverley attackers to play with. Field also missed a substantial number of first up tackles, handing Beverley the attacking impetus and quick ball.
Through strong forward play, Beverley managed to suck in the Huddersfield defence on their own try line and then send the ball wide to centre Bussy, who ran in over the line between two floundering Field defenders.
With Beverley finding it easy to punch holes in the flailing Field defence, they soon found themselves back in the Huddersfield twenty-two. With ‘Field again being sucked into the ruck, Beverley pushed the ball wide with speed, this time to Inside Centre Tomasi Tanumi who sprinted over the try line unopposed.
Two more Beverley Penalties and Two Yellow cards for ‘Field ended possibly the most disappointing half of the season for promotion chasers, who were 20 points adrift at half time.
The second half started in a much stronger fashion for Huddersfield with replacement prop Laurence Sanderson carrying what seemed like the Beverley Back-Three on his back, powered over the line to score Huddersfield’s first points of the game.
Both sides then exchanged penalties before Beverley landed what looked like the killer blow. With Huddersfield trying to secure field position in the Beverley half, they lost ball seemingly inconspicuously at the line-out. Beverley, through slick hand and a turn of pace played their way out of their own twenty-two all the way to Huddersfield’s try-line with winger George Wood applying the finish.
Although the score was now 30-10 Huddersfield continued to grow into the game and were sparked into life with a try from Scrum-Half Joel Hinchcliffe. Hinchcliffe, at this point filling in at fly half, broke through a half gap in the Beverley Defence to score and put Huddersfield back within reach.
The turning point in the last quarter, which handed all the initiative to Huddersfield, was the sending off of Beverley Flanker Joeseph Pickets for a tip tackle on Field Second row Gavin Rhodes.
Huddersfield then scored a late flurry of tries one for Nick Sharpe who has winger Michael Clark to thank for bursting through several Beverley defenders on a 40 metre run, before popping the ball to Sharpe who drove over the line.
Fields final try came from Full-Back Tom Hodson who ran an arcing line around the Beverley line and outpaced his defending counterpart to score in the final minute and put Huddersfield within one point of victory.
Unfortunately Hodson missed a difficult touchline conversion but there was to be a final chance for Field.
As the clock went dead, precise running and forward play, forced a penalty from Beverley which was in their own half. Unfortunately the kick was just out of range for Hodson who again missed the opportunity to give his side the lead and left the final score at 30-29 to Beverly.
Disappointed with the result First Team Manager Lee Paxman felt his side were lucky to get back into the game: “when you turn up and play like that what would you expect? To get two points was a bit of consolation really but that first twenty minutes was really poor and gave us a mountain to climb to get back into the game.”
Huddersfield are now four point behind league leaders Stockport with two games in hand, knowing that they now have to win their final three games of the season to secure promotion. Huddersfield next travel to face Billingham away.