It was good to see some old faces back in a Hoppers shirt this weekend. As the game developed their services were very welcome by the 6th team.
The game started very brightly despite Moose pulling a muscle in the warm up. Hoppers forwards dominated and kept a lively Bolton side pinned in their own 22. The breakthrough came after about 15 minutes with the first try to the home side. Bolton were not however going to go down without a fight. After making a few rolling substitutes (and they had plenty to choose from, 9 in total!) they came back at Hoppers with much youthful pace and enthusiasm. Some very good play from their back row and lively backs kept them in the game and ensured they scored the next try.
Hoppers regrouped and with the arrival of ‘super sub’ Bill (hat trick) Bailey commenced the fight back.
After the break Bolton kept up the pressure and tried to pin the Hoppers back. A long kick deep into the Hoppers 22 saw a superb one handed pick up whilst handing off an opponent from Craig Steel, (Dad Brierley took the credit for their piece of skill, reckons he taught him this in colts!). Hoppers resorted to tried and trusted tactics. A fifty meter driving maul resulted in a text book forwards try for Bill Bailey. With six minutes to go Hoppers were still losing. Digging deep in the scrum the forwards domination finally paid dividends. A third try from Bill saw Hoppers home in the nick of time (We are still awaiting the jug!!!).
Final score Hoppers 29 – Bolton 26