Burnage 2nd XV 7 Hoppers 2nd XV 92
The second team kept the pressure on title favourites Macclesfield with a 14 try romp against a gallant but ultimately outclassed Burnage side. Shorn of the first team players who bolstered their ranks just 21 days earlier the hosts were no match for the pace and power of the defending champions.
On a glorious sunny afternoon in South Manchester Young’s men made deep inroads into Macclesfield’s superior points difference although they couldn’t quite match the feast that the men from Cheshire had enjoyed over the Easter weekend.
Hoppers selected a strong and adventurous side with just five of the eighteen aged over 25 and the manner in which they attacked Burnage reflected the exuberance of youth which Young’s men have prided themselves on this season.
Josh Purnell marshalled the back line superbly and helped himself to 32 points (2 tries & 11 conversions) and the manner in which he attacked the gain line caused Burnage problems all afternoon. With Eddie Webster, Chris Gale and the extremely promising Luke Procter prominent in the pack the young back line, which contained 3 players still at school, enjoyed the platform which afforded them the space to run riot.
Tom Grimes, who has recently been selected in the Northumberland squad, opened the scoring whilst Adam Birchall (2), Harry Reddick (1) and Greg Horsfall (2) all got in the act. Meanwhile Ollie Yates and Antony Elliott both grabbed hat tricks, thus ensuring that the backs did all the damage.
The seconds return to action this Friday night with a return fixture against Sedgley Park at Lightfoot Green. Hoppers will be hoping for a strong performance to maintain the pressure on Macclesfield and keep them in the hunt for the Bateman Premier League.