Broughton Park 1st XV vs Douglas 1st XV
A disappointing second half performance saw Park’s 1st XV lose 33-7 to Penrith in the serene setting of Winter’s Park. After an even first half which saw Park only trailing by a handful of points at half term, both collective and individual errors in the second half saw Penrith pull away. Again Park’s execution when in their opponent’s twenty two was not up to scratch, failing to score any points in the second despite working a number of opportunities. This coupled with a detrition in Park’s defence after an excellent first half defensive display, keeping out Penrith several times, saw the homes side score 21 points without reply.
Park welcome the Manxmen of Douglas to Hough End this Saturday and will look to right the wrongs of last week. Douglas are another side to be recently promoted to North One West having gained their place in 2016 via the play offs, along with champions Manchester. In their first season they recorded a mid-table finish, in contrast to Manchester who finished just above the relegation places.
Douglas are currently the form team of the league having won their last four in a row. This has seen them close to within a point of league leaders Carlisle, whilst having a game in handed. This run has seen them score 143 points whilst conceding only 40, helping them to record the best points difference in the league. Park in contrast boast the third best defence in the league, however they have scored the second fewest amount of points behind bottom club De La Salle. This match will prove to be a great test of Park’s defence and the need for the team to improve their execution when opportunities arise is now paramount.
1st XV Squad
Askew, Bryan, Charnley, Cibula, Dewland, Dundell, Flavell, J Hodkinson, Kelly, Maddock, J Noone, C O'Donnell, P O'Donnell, Raybould, Richardson, F Smith, Tully, Wilson
Sandbach 2nd XV vs Broughton Park 2nd XV
In contrast to the 1st XVs performance, the 2nd XV put in a heroic display to beat Penrith 2nd XV by a single point after travelling with a depleted squad. Despite the long coach journey, Park started the better of the two building on the opening score by Reece Gayle with another two tries and a Tom Mortimore penalty. Penrith responded with a try of their own making the scores 5-24 at the break.
In the second half Penrith came out a different side scoring four tries unanswered to take the lead 25-24. Despite being a man down following a yellow card for Chris Waind, Park rallied and tries apiece for Keenan Taku and the returning Ben Hughes saw Park retake the lead 25-36. Penrith hit back with a converted try and penalty to bring the scores to 35-36 heading into the final minutes of the game, however Park held out to record a fantastic victory.
This week the 2nd XV travel down the M6 to face the league’s 2nd place side Sandbach at Bradwell Road. Sandbach have been in imperious form all season, but relinquished the lead of the league for the first time after losing away to Birkenhead Park last week. They have broken the 30 point barrier in 6 of their 8 games so far this season and will provide Park’s biggest test of the season. However, Park themselves have come into form following their bad start to the season and find themselves up to 5th, following three strong wins in a row. Large wins over Sedgley Park and Altrincham Kersal has instilled belief within the squad that was lacking in the opening month, as demonstrated by the performance against Penrith.
2nd XV Squad
Glynn, B Hughes, D Hughes, Leaver, Kerr, Malin, Moriarty, Mortimore, Muir, Mutts, Owens, Pickbourn. Safi, Selby, Sherwin, J Smith, Waind, Wellington
Broughton Park 3rd XV vs Hope Valley 1st XV
After defeat last time out against Stockport, Park’s 3rd XV have a tough assignment at Hough End as the league leaders Hope Valley are the visitors. Hope Valley have won 5 of their 8 games so far this season, but have played an additional 2 more games than Park. While they may be top of the league currently they have also lost the same amount of games as Park. This will encourage Park that at home they should be able to get a result and consolidate their position in the top half of the table.
Broughton Park Ladies vs Kendall Wasps
Last week the Ladies challenging season continued with a cup game away against last season’s Women's Championship North 2 runners up Birkenhead Park Ladies. Despite playing opposition from the league above, Park were not overawed by the more experienced home side and kept themselves in the game throughout, outscoring Birkenhead in the second half. However, despite the ladies’ spirited performance they lost by 5 points, 34-29. Considering that last season the two sides were separated by two leagues, this performance was another indication of how far the Park’s ladies have come in a very short time.
The ladies return to league action with a home match at Hough End against third placed Kendal Wasps. Kendall come into this game having won 4 of their 5 games this season, with their only defeat coming against current league leaders Crewe & Nantwich.
The Senior Colts have the weekend off and will return with home match against Ormskirk a week on Sunday.