Wharfedale 27 Fylde RFC 26: Fylde's mistakes prove costly
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A penalty three minutes from time gave Wharfedale victory in a game where Fylde outscored the hosts by four tries to three but errors proved very costly.
Fylde received the ball, playing up the slope, but it was the home team first on the board with a Sam Gaudie penalty on seven minutes.
Adam Lanigan took the restart on the full to set up a platform for Fylde, but another knock-on meant the move broke down before Tane Bentley was yellow-carded for an early, high hit.
Fylde finally got going in the 17th minute when a Wharfedale error gave them possession near halfway.
Tom Carleton broke down the right channel, drew the last man, and gave Ben Turner a clear run in with Greg Smith converting for a 7-3 lead.
It didn’t last long, however, as a knock-on at the restart gave Dale a scrum on Fylde’s 22.
Oliver Riddiough shot through the gap created by the yellow card, took the tackle and popped the ball up to Olli Cicognini, who dotted down near the post with Gaudie’s conversion making it 10-7.
On the half-hour, the hosts’ clearance kick stayed infield and was collected by Jordan Dorrington, who gave Sam Carleton the chance to create havoc.
He jinked and swerved his way through to the last defender before feeding the supporting Bentley, who raced under the posts and Smith’s conversion had Fylde back in front at 14-10.
After a strong period of play, Fylde had a period of poor game management late in the half.
Rather than use the safe option of kicking, they knocked on and the hosts took possession before Wharfedale’s Jake Armstrong went over for a converted try and a 17-14 lead at the break.
The resumption saw Fylde back in front as the hosts failed to find touch, allowing Sam Carleton to break.
Two phases followed before Corey Bowker trundled over near the posts for a third converted try, seeing them 21-17 ahead.
Both teams then had their moments but, in a game where two or three key errors made all the difference, the next proved costly.
Fylde had the ball on the home 22, where they tried to spin it wide but a wild pass went to ground and was twice kicked upfield by Wharfedale.
Omari Kaup Samuels had an easy run in, Gaudie kicking the conversion to edge the home team back in front at 24-21.
On 61 minutes, Fylde went for a lineout rather than kick a penalty, a decision that ended with Bentley scoring a second try though Smith was unable to convert from the touchline.
Leading 26-24, Fylde were reduced to 14 men on 66 minutes as Bowker was deemed to have played the man without the ball, only for Gaudie’s kick to come back off the woodwork.
However, the defining moment came in the 77th minute as Wharfedale forced a penalty which Ryan Hodgson kicked to give them victory.
Wharfedale: Hodgson, Mallinson, Coulton, Cicognini, Kaup-Samuels, Gaudie, Riddiough, Dickinson, Collinson, Armstrong, Stockton, Hedgley, Pinder, Markey, Baldwin. Subs: Weston, Meehan, Green, Bell, Beresford.
Fylde: S Carleton, Turner, Dorrington, T Carleton, Lanigan, Smith, Gould, Bowker, Gregory, Brooks, Hall-Lyon, Garrod, Bentley, Harrison, Fairbrother. Subs: Forster, Lewis, Altham, Parker.