Lining up for our first Home fixture since late April we had high hopes going into the game versus Blackpool Stanley this weekend.
Despite fielding a strong squad, it was the Away side who hit the ground running to open the scoring with three early tries. The first a dive over by the Hooker, the second a well weighted kick to the corner and the third a spread play from right to left. With none of the kicks converted, Blackpool led 12-0 after 20 minutes.
Bolton bounced back with a nicely worked try that ended with Second Rower Ryan Terry releasing Winger Martin Galland down the right touchline. Martin outpaced his opposite number before diving over the line in the corner to close the gap.
Some poor handling by Bolton gifted possession to Stanley and they were soon crossing the line again, two quick tries prior to half time gave them a 24-4 lead at the break.
Once the second half got underway the game continued on a similar path. Blackpool scored two tries early on before the Mets hit back. Neil Walsh benefited from a quick play the ball, and with a show and go on the way to the line he was able to get across the whitewash for the try.
As we started to pressure the Blackpool line again, debutant Kieran Lockett’s pass was intercepted and Stanley scored a breakaway try. If the pass from Kieran had reached its mark it could had led to Mets try but unfortunately the opposing player nipped in to put a halt to that.
Another Mets debutant was Josh Holmes, starting at Centre but later switching to Full Back he was put through a gap by Ste Hickey and sprinted downfield. With very little space between Josh and the touchline he was stopped by the opposing Full Back just 10 metres from the try line.
When we were back in possession we again pressured the Blackpool line, this time Mark Dorning received the ball and spotted a gap in the defensive line that allowed him to score. BY this stage the score stood at 46-12 to the Away side.
Two further tries followed for Stanley, a barge over from the big forward before another spread play try sealed the win at 52-12.
The loss was disappointing for Bolton as confidence was high going into the game, however, the enjoyment of playing Rugby League for the town is the most important part for many of the players. Runners up in the Man of the Match award were Ste Hickey and Martin Galland, but it was Neil Walsh that earned the top honour from the opposition coaches. The Top Tackler award went to Loose Forward Josh Bourne who continues to impress since his arrival at the club.
Bolton Mets are at Home again next Saturday, this time facing Aspull New Springs at 2.30pm.
*Picture: Jackie Clowes