Broughton Park 2nd XV 0 Hoppers 2nd XV 58
The second team remain unbeaten and top of the Bateman Premier League after scoring nine unanswered tries against a young Broughton Park side who refused to throw the towel in.
In conditions more akin to Majorca than Manchester the second team put in a strong and disciplined performance. Admittedly they squandered several opportunities which would have seen them approach three figures but one can have few complaints as it is now over five hours since they conceded any points.
Hoppers tries came from Cameron Berry, who bagged four, Matt Conway, Charles Hostier and the impressive Connor Murphy who helped himself to a hat trick on debut. Murphy showed good power from the base of the scrum whilst making significant contributions in the loose and he will be a big asset to the squad.
Josh Purnell’s boot provided 13 points and he appears to be settling in well. Additionally, Killian Wallace had another strong game and man of the match Ali Austin put in a typically athletic performance.
Leading 27-0 at half time Mike Lough’s men struggled a little after the break. However their superior fitness levels soon told and the home side’s challenge began to wain. Word filtered through from Lightfoot Lane that the first team had beaten league leaders Westoe and this appeared to inspire the seconds as they ran in four late tries.
Sedgley Park remain second on points difference, closely followed by Stockport and Friday night’s opponents Fylde. Hoppers hope for good support for the fixture, which kicks off at 7-45. There is no doubt that our rivals from the Woodlands will present a significant threat to Hoppers title ambitions. Word is that our old friends from along the M55 are confident that they can bring our winning run to an abrupt end. Given the extent of the resources available to them and the ambition they possess one could argue that Fylde start the game as strong favourites. However Hoppers should almost be at full strength as they will hope to welcome back the likes of Owen McKenna, Jack Walker, Mark Murray and Andy Napier. Lough’s men are increasingly determined to maintain their strong start and cannot wait for what should be a keenly contested local derby.