By Dave Campbell
Scarborough struggled for most of the first half of their opening league game of the season against a lively Selby side at Silver Royd. However the visitors failed to capitalise on their early dominance and the Seasiders took control after the break to dominate proceedings and win comfortably in the end.
Playing with the advantage of a northerly wind Scarborough struggled to cope with the swift rucking visitors who bossed the breakdown; however their defence was rock solid and some bone crunching tackles kept them in the game. They lost the services of Tom Ratcliffe with an eye injury in the 10th minute; Graeme Jeffrey came off his wing to replace him in the centre and Joe Lenton came on to play on the wing.
Selby ran good lines in the early exchanges with skipper Sam Weller at centre making some incisive breaks; No8 Charles Webster was also in fine form as the visiting forwards were inevitably first to the breakdown in the opening quarter. And only great defensive work by fullback Ant Coffey and wing Harry Domett prevented a certain try when winger Andy Dallimore was released deep in the Scarborough half following a bullocking break by Webster.
Coach Lee Douglas re-shuffled his pack with Paul Taylor coming on to prop and Wesley Langkilde moving to No8. From that point Scarborough bossed the forward battle with back rows Drew Govier and Eamon Chapman in destructive form and the tight five repeatedly shunting the visiting eight off their own ball.
A Selby infringement on halfway saw fly-half Tom Harrison set up an attacking lineout on the visitors’ five meter line with his kick and following sustained pressure Langkilde powered over for the opening try of the game in the 38th minute. Harrison converted then added a penalty on the stroke of half-time, and although Selby had bossed the best part of the half they found themselves trailing 0-10 at the break.
A further Harrison penalty just after half-time awarded when the Selby forwards collapsed a scrum, stretched the lead to 13-0 which led to a period of domination by the home side particularly at scrum time. Fly half Ian Adamson had a couple of penalty chances to get the visitors into the game in the 46th and 52nd minutes but missed both.
Selby faded in the fourth quarter and looked a shadow of side that started the game; Scarborough controlled the mid-field through Harrison, Tomasz Chadwick and Martin Robson and when they won clean ball at a lineout on halfway in the 62nd minute, the ball was moved infield through hands for a surging run by fullback Ant Coffey to break the line and send winger Harry Domett in for a spectacular try. Harrison failed to convert.
Leading 18-0, Scarborough had a stranglehold on the game in the closing stages and clinched the points when, following a bit of handbags which saw a Selby prop sin-binned, the men from Silver Royd were awarded a penalty. Harrison’s kick into the wind hit both upright and crossbar before dropping over to clinch what was, in the end, a well deserved 21-0 win.
Coach Lee Douglas’ men showed great resilience and composure to weather a first half onslaught, re-group and eventually take control to win a hard-fought game. There was encouraging performances all over the paddock with youngsters James Leach, Drew Govier, Hayden Ogilvie and Joe Lenton making big contributions with a solid pack performance and good work from the back three completing a good day at the office.
Tries: langkilde, domett
Scarborough: coffey, domett, ratcliffe [c], chadwick, jeffrey, robinson, harrison, hopper, williams, langkilde, readman, watson, ogilvie, govier, chapman, taylor, leach, lenton
Selby: webster, harrison, lunt, weller, dallimore, adamson, fox, rourke, tanner, bell, lanaghan, oliver, blaymire, rowntree, wood, booth, cicero, mcloughin
Scarborough News "Man of the Match": drew govier
Drew had a terrific debut in Scarborough’s back row and was involved in everything. The youngster’s defensive work was immense and his handling a delight.