Pythons Crush Unbeaten League Leaders Barnsley
Barnsley were quickly on the offensive from the kick off with their 10 gaining 40 metres before being tackled on the 22 metre line. The Pythons regained the ball and set up their first attack but failing to clear their lines. The home team were quickly on the attack once again. Some great defensive from Nathan Wake and Hugh Tatlow in their own 22 and Barnsley give away a penalty for not releasing. Clough clears his lines to halfway. Clean ball from Jon Pickard at the line out and Tim Evans quickly shows his strength at inside centre beating four players. The home side turn the ball over on their 22 but some determined from Scott Irvine and Tatlow pressuring the home to be penalised for offside. Will Clough kicks the penalty 0-3 after 10 minutes.
Scott Irvine tackles in midfield from the restart forcing a turnover ball releasing Tatlow who puts Sam Beagrie in the open 30 metres out. He’s tackled into touch on the 5m line. Barnsley fail to clear their lines and Beagrie once again carries hard to put The Pythons back on the offensive. Evans gains ground, the ball is spun wide through the backs hands and several phases being played on the home side’s 10 m line. Turn over and the ball is cleared only the 22m line. Evans is fed from the breakdown breaks several tackles to charge over the line. 0- 8 after 20 minutes.
The Pythons were dominating play with Irvine gaining valuable metres in midfield. In possession Barnsley were unable to break the gain line with ferocious tackling from The Python’s defence led by Irvine, Tatlow and Pickard.
Offside at the breakdown and Barnsley decide to kick into the corner. Pickard steals the line out and Clough clears to The Python’s 10 m line. The Pythons win the Barnsley line out again and quick hands across the backs puts The Pythons back in Barnsley’s 22. The Python’s are caught offside again at the breakdown. Barnsley try again in the corner. This time Tatlow steals the ball and breaks through to the 10 m. Jed Carr is quick to get his back line going and James Audsley-Beck is pulled down frustratingly short. The ball is cleared only to find Carr once again back on the offensive with supporting Pickard driving down the blind side. A spilled pass and the home team are back in possession. Barnsley retain possession and The Pythons are caught offside at the breakdown. Penalty chance for the home team who opt for the corner once again. A line out win for the home side they move the ball across the field but The Python’s defence holds firm with Max Sharp taking charge. A turnover chance and Wake begins the drive to take The Pythons out of defence. Clough clears to halfway with a great kick chase from Beagrie . The ball is hacked downfield where the home team knock on. Clough feeds Carr, short to Evans who breaks through into the 22 and releases Tatlow on his shoulder to touch down under the posts. Clough kicks the extras 0- 15 on 40 minutes.
The Pythons begin second half as they finished the first and were quickly on the Barnsley line with Matt leach held up just short. Penalty awarded to The Pythons and a yellow card to Barnsley for continued penalties in the red zone. Surprisingly Barnsley went to uncontested scrums taking the opportunity away from The Pythons to drive over. Carr feeds Evans who quickly passes to Beagrie touching down only for play to be pulled back for a forward pass. Barnsley clear their lines, Carr returns a perfect 50/22, line out Pythons 5m from the home line. A knock on in the line out and the home team clear their lines .A penalty in field from the resulting line out and Clough adds to the score 0 – 18 on 50minutes.
With Marcus Fotherby dominating both home and away line out ball, Barnsley found it difficult to gain any possession and mount attacks. Any attempt to ball carry was knocked backwards by the ever present Irvine, Tatlow with Jordan Payne turning over ball at the breakdown. With the scrums back to contested The Pythons were dominating the game but not adding points on the scoreboard. Will Butler returns a sliced clearance kick back into the home team’s 22 . Audsley-Beck feeds Irvine who carries the ball to within 10 m. The Pythons are awarded a penalty in front of the posts. Some unpleasantness from the home team results in two red cards and one yellow for their trouble. With The Pythons being issued 1 yellow card the referee blows for full time 0-18.
Coach Dan Bird commented, ”That was probably the best performance I’ve seen from a Pythons side. We came to the unbeaten league leaders and after a shaky first few minutes we laid down markers across the whole game. We held their big runners with some great tackling and punched hoes in their defence with direct running. Plays worked well, we stuck to the plan and held our discipline. This was a great team performance”.
The Pythons are 3rd in the league, 1 point away from a promotion place.