Ripon 2nd XV 22 – 19 Wharfedale Dev XV

The Development XV travelled to Ripon for their first game in a number of weeks hoping to continue their recent good form, but knowing that Ripon were always going to provide a tough test and this proved to be the case.

Wharfedale started well and played some decent attacking rugby for the opening period of the match but failed to capitalise and make any impact on the scoreboard. It was the home side who managed to score first after an attacking kick was charged down and they managed to chase the ball down and score under the posts. The conversion was successful. 7-0 to Ripon.

Ripon then continued to apply pressure to the visitors defence and eventually it yielded again and they crossed for a second try and a 12-0 lead.

Wharfedale then looked to have found some composure and shape and soon responded with a try of their own. Winger Sam Smith, with one of his trade mark runs down the wing, beat several defenders and managed to cut back infield to score near the posts. He converted his own try and we were back in the game at 12-7.

The lads in green scored next with a powerful run by Centre Gavin Spencer, who blasted his way through a group of Ripon defenders to finish a great individual effort and level the scores. Smith then converted so Wharfedale had the lead at 14-12.

The opening score of the second half was completed by Smith grabbing his second try. He went on another typical run and beating Ripon defenders for power and pace, dotting down under the sticks. He should have converted this one as well but what must be one of the worst conversion attempts ever went under the bar. 19-12 and things were looking increasingly better for the visitors.

Ripon, however, had other ideas and two quickly taken tries restored their lead to 22-19. With the clock ticking, Wharfedale showed good character to launch a sustained final attack with the hope of clinching a late victory but it was not to be. Final score Ripon 22 – 19 Wharfedale.

Tries: Sam Smith (2), Gavin Spencer, Cons: Sam Smith (2).
1. Matty Close
2. Ian Close
3. James Huck
4. Thomas Walker
5. Adam Stockton
6. James Ardron
7. Michael Snowden
8. Dan Benson
9. Harry Balderson
10. Michael Beer
11. Sam Smith
12. Mark Simpson
13. Gavin Spencer
14. Duncan Clayton-Stead
15. Sam Mason
16. Joe Jackson
17. Jonny Burton
18. Ed Walker

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