Leodiensian RUFC 1st XV – Harrogate Pythons RUFC 1st XV

April 6, 2024 3:00 pm49:25Crag Lane, Off King Lane, Alwoodley, Leeds, LS17 5PR
Started on April 6, 2024

Pythons get bonus point but lose at Leos.

The Pythons travelled to Leodiensian’s for the last league game of the season.  In glorious sunshine a close game was eventually taken by Leos with 2 interception tries in the last 10 minutes, final score 49-25.

Jed Carr opened the scoring with an early penalty.  The home responded quickly with a converted try.  The Pythons came back with a period of intense pressure using Ed Challis and Matt Leach to break the home defensive line.  Ben Pryor carried the ball through the centre defence and delivered a perfectly timed short pass to supporting  fellow centre Tommy Carswell who outpaced the home defence to score under the posts.  Carr with the extras, 7-10 on 15mins.

The Pythons pack dominated the next period of play.  Steve Smith, Nathan Wake (on his 200th cap) and Leach showed cohesion and power in the set piece.  Harry Parrish, playing scrum half, delivered the ball to Carr who utilised the pace of Bailey Bromberg and Nick Bells on the wings.  The home defence held firm and some brisk work at the breakdowns created opportunities to add the score, 28-10 on 20 mins.  The game remained competitive with no additional score, half time.

Some forced changes saw Wake and Will Butler leave the game . Returning Sam Rowntree added to The Pythons driving game.  Working closely with fellow back rowers Herbie Middleton and Rhys Cory phases became too strong for the defence and George Booth rampaged over the line to score 28-15.  Leos turn over the ball again to score, 35-15 but The Pythons responded with Carswell getting his second and Nick Bell diving into the corner for the bonus point try, 35-25 on 70 mins.

The Pythons took advantage of their momentum and looked to develop their score but 2 interception sealed the fixture, 49-25 full time.

After the game Coach Dan Bird said,”  Once again we showed what we could do.  With some of our key players injured we looked to returning players to fill a role and what a great effort they made.  We had 2 retiring players today Matt Leach and Will Butler and what contributions they made.  Harry Parrish played his first game this season, out of position at scrum half and what a fantastic performance he put in.  Everyone’s effort was outstanding and I’m proud to have coached this squad these past 9 seasons”.

Bradford and Bingley were beaten and so the league positions remain the same at the bottom.  There is a  knock on effect in Level’s 6 and 7 with the demise of Jersey Reds in The Championship and so promotion and relegation slots will be decide on playing records.  Whist The RFU do their calculations The Pythons wait to see if two, one or none are related with second placed Wetherby awaiting to see if 1 or 2 teams are promoted.

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