Bolton Mets are continuing to do it tough in 2018, but with some senior players set to return in the coming weeks we hope to see improvements sometime soon.
A highly experienced Rylands Sharks side visited Greenhalgh’s Pavilion on Saturday, and they soon had the lead when a strong carry and spin in the tackle saw the Second Rower cross the line.
A nicely worked spread play saw the Sharks increase their lead with an acrobatic dive from the Winger into the far corner, and even though the Mets players felt he had gone into touch the referee awarded the try. Another try quickly followed on the back of some poor defence, although Full Back Carl Henderson tried his hardest to stop the ball hitting terra-firma. With only one conversion successful the score stood at 14-0 mid way through the half.
With Rylands on the attack again, Centre Andy Roberts coolly intercepted a pass and sprinted upfield. Playing only his third game in approximately 2 years meant he didn’t quite have the legs to outpace the chasing defenders, as such he was brought down 20 metres from the line. The following plays failed to capitalise on the break and earn the Mets our opening points.
A fourth try of the half saw the Rylands players slip through a couple of tackles and go over in the corner, again Carl trying his damnedest to stop the try. The conversion was missed again to leave the half time score at 18-0.
Bolton Mets only had 8 players available on Friday morning, but after a day of sending messages we managed to get 17 players on the team sheet. Despite fielding a full squad, we had no out and out Half Backs, Hooker or Full Back and so it was a case of making the best of what we had available. Callum Smith, playing at Stand Off for the first time, picked up an injury mid way through the half after landing heavily under a tackle, this was also followed by the withdrawal of Andy Roberts with a knee injury. This meant further adjustments for Head Coach Al Scarbrough which obviously didn’t help with the team structure.
In the second half, the Away side showed their quality and increased their lead with immediate effect. Several tries followed as the Mets defence faltered further and allowed the Sharks time to run. The quick footed Wingers managed a try apiece before the forwards got in on the act with a couple of barge over tries. The kicker improved as the game progressed and the Rylands soon hit the half century.
It was another bad day at the office for the Mets, one of many over reason years, but we still have positives to take from the game. Another solid game by Andrian Gribbin, an encouraging performance by Carl Henderson and Gavin Corfield on their return and another fine display from Rob Tuppen, although a late injury marred his game.
Despite playing in the unusual position of Hooker, Ryan Terry was picked out as Man of the Match, with Carl Henderson and Paul Charnock runners up. The Top Tackler Award could easily have gone to Carl, but it was Centre Rob Tuppen who deservedly topped the poll.
The defeat wasn’t the only bad news of the weekend, having withdrawn from the league our opening day victory at Home to North West Tigers has been wiped from the records and now leaves on zero points ahead of next weeks opponents Latchford Albion A