2nd XV come from behind to beat Sale FC

Date: 05 September 2017

Despite trailing 21-7 at half time the 2nd XV produced a Farah-like finish to overcome a spirited Sale FC side 29-21.

By Ade Jebb

Hoppers’ first half was littered with handling errors and a slice of poor fortune and until the hour mark it looked like it was going to be one of those days.

However given the result they can be forgiven for some rustiness on what was a pleasant late summer afternoon.

The home side applied the early pressure but the visitors opened the scoring, with their heavier set of forwards driving a well worked line out over for a converted score.

Hoppers achieved parity a few minutes later with debutant Alex Isherwood crossing the line. Fellow newcomer, Jobe Roxby, who looked composed at full-back added the extras.

The home side found themselves behind once more as Sale crossed in the left hand corner. There was a suspicion of a forward pass in the build up but Hoppers allowed their frustrations to distract them from applying pressure in defence.

Hoppers nearly achieved parity after a sustained spell of pressure but they spilled the ball on the line. This was compounded moments later when Sale drove another line out over, extending their lead to 21-7.

After the restart the early exchanges provided more frustration for Young’s men but they eventually asserted themselves as the Sale pack began to tire. The arrears were reduced by a Roxby penalty and man of the match Jack Akrigg began to make inroads in the Sale defence.

Captain Mark Rigbye also began to show his quality and the home side appeared to draw inspiration from his efforts. Hoppers were on the board again after some quick thinking by Tom Forster created the opening for Rhys Llewellyn to scoot over. Roxby added the extras and all of a sudden Sale’s lead was down to four.

The home side were well on top now and Roxby finished off a flowing move, the former Fylde youngster couldn’t add the extras but Hoppers led for the first time.

Victory was sealed some five minutes later as Proctor scored the fourth and secured the bonus point in the process. Roxby added another two and by the time the final whistle blew a bemused looking Sale side had been overwhelmed. The visitors had played a full part in what was an entertaining fixture and were unfortunate not to secure a bonus point of their own towards the end of proceedings.

Next week Hoppers travel to Cheshire and take on perennial title challengers Macclesfield. The Lions will be looking to recover from their opening day defeat to champions Sedgley Park so Hoppers have no time to rest on their early season laurels.


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