The Mighty Ducks welcomed Cleckheaton 3rd XV to Laund Hill for one of the local derbies of the season. It was lucky it was a local derby for two of the Laund Hill players who managed to get lost in the fog and arrive at the wrong club! Fortunately by kick off the full flock of ducks had been assembled and were ready for battle against a side who have had a strong first part of the season with some good wins.
In foggy conditions with the floodlights on the Laund Hill side started the game strongly and were immediately on the front foot. The forwards were setting a strong platform in the set piece which gave the backs the opportunity to work the ball wide. The first 20 minutes of the game were some of the best rugby the ducks have played this season and 4 tries were scored. One from Henry Barton, Two from Kyle Sharp and one from Oliver Frankland AKA Poobag Jnr! All these tries demonstrated the ducks ability and intent to run the ball into space and support each other when breaks were made. Three of the tries were converted to give the Laund Hill side a 26-0 lead. There then came a couple of discipline issues with two yellow cards meaning the home team were asked to defend with only 13. As the half came to a close the Cleckheaton side were beginning to find their way in the game and scored a well worked try to give a half time score of 26-5.
The second half began with the ducks back up to 14 players and looking to find the form of the start of the first half. They didn’t quite hit those heights but continued to work hard in attack and defence and were rewarded with a try from Morgan who was playing in the forwards for the first time today and enjoying the opportunity to get involved in everything. He did also manage a yellow card in the second half to take the team tally to three.
Even with being a man short again the ducks were kept on the front foot by every single player committing to the cause in attack and defence ensuring that there wasn’t an opportunity for Cleck to think that a come back was on. Jacob Holmes scored next for the ducks and was a constant nuisance for the Cleckheaton defence all day that earned him the man of the match award. Cleckheaton scored their second try from a tap penalty in the Laund Hill 22 with their fly half running over the attempted tackle from his opposite number.
There was one further score for each side. Another try for Jacob Holmes for Laund Hill and a score from Cleckheaton that came after some strong carries from their forwards.
Final score 43-15 – Laund Hill 7 Tries, 4 Conversions.
Today was a real sign of the progress this ducks side are continuing to make this season. Every single player involved can hold their head high knowing that they put in an excellent shift in the fog today. There was also a lovely moment for the Frankland family today with father and son starting together for the first time in senior rugby.
Reporter: Jon Smith