Tarleton welcomed Didsbury Toc H First XV to Carr Lane on Saturday for a top of the table clash. Both sides had full squads and from the evidence gleaned from the pre-match warm up both sides appeared to be ‘up’ for the game.
The first 15 minutes of the match saw both sides defending well and some big tackles going in stopped any attacking progress being made. It was Didsbury who broke the deadlock when they took a quick tap penalty just outside the Tarleton 22 catching Tarletons’ defence out and scoring a try in the corner.
Tarleton came straight back at them as they upped their game a bit and two penalties for infringements at the breakdown saw them kick their way into the corner. From a 5mtr lineout the ball was gathered well and the maul drove forward and Rob Williamson touched the ball down to score.
From the re-start Didsbury again put pressure on the Tarleton defence but they were equal to the task and a good tackle saw the ball spilled by a Didsbury forward and the ball was hacked through the Didsbury attacking line. This was chased down by George Skofic who with a piece of audacious skill fell on the ball and whilst in an upside don position managed to pop the ball up into the hands of the supporting Fraser Grieves who ran in to score. Fraser converted his own try and Tarleton led 12-5.
The next try came from a defensive Didsbury line-out where their clearance kick was charged down by Rob Williamson and the ball was gathered and thrown back to Tom Eckersley who crashed through a ruck of Didsbury forwards to score.
Didsbury upped their pace again and put Tarleton on the back foot for the rest of the first half and a promising chance of a score was ruined when a Didsbury player fumbled a pass and Fraser Grieves picked up the loose ball and ran the length of the field to score and convert.
At half time Tarleton had their bonus point for the fourth try and led 24-5.
Didsbury started the second half in a positive manner and Tarleton couldn’t get their hands on the ball. The Tarleton defence appeared to be working well but after 10 minutes of sustained pressure Didsbury eventually created a gap for them to score a good try in the corner.
The rest of the half saw Tarleton defending but in a rare period of possession they broke away and good passing along the line saw Aidan Miller outrun the Didsbury defence to score in the corner, this was also converted and Tarleton ran out winners 31-10.
This keeps Tarleton ahead of Burnley in the division and they have a rest week now before meeting Garstang on the 10th December.