Bad injury a major blow in tight match

Matty Hoyle in action against Old Crocs
Matty Hoyle in action against Old Crocs

BRODS were involved in their second tight North One East contest of the season against Sheffield and the result again went with home advantage.

The visitors did return with a losing bonus point to move a little further away from the drop zone but a bad injury late in the game to back Matt Hoyle was a blow.

Following traffic delays on the M62 Brods finally arrived in Sheffield with little time to warm up.

However, they started brightly on a bright and blustery day at Abbeydale.

The home side dominated the early stages playing into a variable wind but were unable to convert possession and territory into any points advantage.

Fly half Donal Collins attempted a penalty following an early scrum infringement but the ball dropped well short of the target and was well cleared by Danny Wood.

A pitch which is often heavy looked to be in superb condition and Brods tried to run the ball after gaining position in the Sheffield half. The visiting pack with Jordan Shiel, Rob Jennings and Ollie Akroyd to the fore, caused the home side to infringe at the ruck and having earned the penalty Wood had no hesitation in accepting and provided the visitors with an early three points lead.

Sheffield were making mistakes when in possession, often due to the pressure Brods were applying. Brods scrum was strong and after 14 minutes they moved the ball well with good interplay between forwards and backs.

Sheffield infringed again with an offside and Wood accepted the three points on offer from 35 metres.

Brods’ confidence was growing and a good move started with Akroyd picking up at the base of the scrum and breaking blind before linking with Michael Briggs and Jennings, only for the the Sheffield scrambling defence to recover and snuff out the chance.

Sheffield resorted to pick and drive as half-time approached but the Brods line held and an interval score of 6-0 to the visitors was a fair reflection of the game.

The home side came out with renewed determination and pressed the visitors and after six minutes Brods were caught offside and Collins reduced the deficit to 6-3 with a well struck kick from 30 metres.

Sheffield now produced their best rugby of the game with good interplay in midfield which resulted in pacy centre Cribley making an arcing break and he showed good pace to beat the cover and score a fine try in the left hand corner.

Brods needed to raise their game and after 25 minutes of the second half they were in the ascendancy but were then harshly penalised when debutant Shiel turned the ball over on halfway.

Much to the Brods’ supporters surprise Shiel was also yellow carded and from a strong position Sheffield also stretched their lead by three points.

Brods put fresh legs on with the arrival of Alex Dawson and Chris Hartley and the visitors continued to press and in the last 10 minutes gained good position from a penalty deep into the Sheffield 22.

Their efforts were well defended by the home side and from their clearance Hoyle tried to keep the ball in play. Falling awkwardly he suffered a severe fracture to his upper arm.

Following treatment by Brods substitute, Richard Holbrough, who is a doctor, the latter then took to the field as Hoyle’s replacement but time ran out on Brods’ efforts.