Huddersfield RUFC were the victors in the friendly ‘Over 35’s’ match at Lockwood Park on 29th December. They ran out winners 24 points to 0 against Huddersfield YMCA in the charity game organised to raise money to support YMCA groundsman Andy Kelly who has recently suffered a serious stroke.

A try by Andre Baillon converted by Chris Duffy gave the home side the edge at half time with two more from former first team skipper Hamish Pratt in the second half making the game safe. A breakaway try by Darren Neilly from the last play of the match rounded off the scoring. The final score line perhaps flattered the home side because the YMCA certainly had their moments. They made a lively start and put their hosts under a lot of pressure in the first twenty minutes but were unable to convert it into points with the home defence holding firm. They also finished the match strongly but mistakes near the line cost them their chance of a consolation score with the final try coming against the run of play.

Photo by Bev Clough Photography

The friendly game had one or two feisty moments and the referee had to speak to both captains to calm things down but all in all the teams produced a fine spectacle for the sizable crowd to enjoy.

Over £1600 was raised from a raffle and collection on the day for the benefit of Andy Kelly. Andy has been a lifelong stalwart of the YMCA club. He began playing in their Age Grade before going on to represent them at senior level. After hanging up his boots he became involved in junior section coaching and was instrumental in establishing the YM Roses Girls XV. At the moment he is confined to a wheelchair and working hard on rehabilitation exercises. It is hoped that money raised will greatly assist him in his recovery.

Richard Sykes, Huddersfield Daily Examiner.

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