Huddersfield suffer late agony on the road at Sedgley Park.
Huddersfield began 2020 with a much improved showing, despite falling to a late 28-24 defeat against Sedgley Park.
Field, who were looking to close the 5 point gap between themselves and safety, started brightly against a team third in the league and with only one home defeat to their name so far, way back in September against Tynedale.
Field had already threatened through a Kian Stewart breakaway when a penalty was sent to the corner for the lineout, and it was worked well to allow Josh Crickmay to become the first Field try scorer of the new decade by forcing it over the try-line from close range.
Sedgley weren’t going to sit and take it, and after getting themselves on the front foot for the first time in the game, showed their quality as they worked the ball to good effect to leave a simple try out wide for Sam Lothian.
Field certainly didn’t let the hosts have it all their own way however, and in a very balanced first half, a little bit of individual magic is what was needed to restore their advantage.
A great team move on the break involving several players was eventually worked to Tom Hodson, who weighed up his options before expertly dinking the ball over the Seedgley defence with his boot before pouncing on the loose ball over the try-line to brilliantly restore Field’s lead.
Then familiar flaws were allowed to surface when a lapse in concentration allowed Lothian to score his second try through the centre after breaking through too easily, both converted to give the hosts a slender 14-10 advantage.
It was going to take real courage from Field to get back into it, even more so when at the start of the second half Sedgley scored a superb try after a flowing team move which saw the ball kicked and claimed out wide before being shifted across the pitch with pinpoint precision to Leon Stewart-Simpson for the try.
Field showed guts in abundance to not let the game slip away from them, a big team push from the maul proving too much for Sedgley to handle as they handed Field a penalty try.
They kept pushing and for the majority of the second half, any spectator would be hard pressed to tell which team was at what end of the table, wave after wave of Field attacks being defended stoutly by Sedgley.
Eventually one broke through however, Lewis Bradley being the quickest to react to a loose ball before showing great feet to shimmy past a couple of challenges and put Field ahead whilst claiming their bonus point try in the process.
A fantastic display from Field and it looked as one which was going to get 2020 off to the best possible start.
It wasn’t to be.
As Field were looking to close out the victory, Sedgley pushed them all the way back to the try-line and after an almighty defensive effort, they eventually managed to break over through Steve Collins and snatch victory right at the death.
On paper, Field will be happy with the two points gained against a side flying high in the table but, given the context of the game, they will be understandably disappointed that they didn’t walk away with all 5.
Afterwards Head Coach Gareth Lewis commented; “It was hugely disappointing to lose in this fashion but considering recent results and how good a team Sedgely Park are I’m very proud of my players.”
“I could see the confidence building once again and we’ll use this as a springboard to take on Fylde next week.”
Now the attention turns to that visit of Fylde to Lockwood Park, where if Field can replicate this performance they stand every chance of claiming a positive result.