Hunslet 24 Oldham 25

Date published: Monday, September 15, 2014

OUR superb performance at Hunslet, best of the season, gave us a well-deserved 25-24 victory in the play-offs on a memorable night at the South Leeds Stadium.

It was good to have a game under lights (not many of those these days) and even better to see the boys giving a massive boost to their hopes of reaching the Grand Final at Headingley on October 5.
It means we now go to York this coming Sunday, September 21 (3pm), for the right to go straight through to the final but with the safety net, for the losers, of a home tie on September 28 against the winners of Hunslet v Gateshead.
Hemel Stags were eliminated after a 15-14 defeat at Gateshead, which was decided by a golden-point drop goal four minutes into extra time.
But back to Hunslet. What a fantastic game it was ! They built a 12-0 lead, but we clawed back the deficit to 12-7 at half-time with a Jon Ford try, a conversion by Steve Roper and, right on the half-time hooter, a drop goal by Josh Crowley.
After half-time we came out firing on all cylinders and produced a fantastic 20 minutes in which our set completion rate was 100 per cent. The pack began to make massive inroads up the middleto set the platform for a dominant Oldham spell in which we scored three more unanswered tries by Dale Bloomfield, Danny Langtree and Michael Ward.
‘Ropes’ converted two of them and also hit home a penalty goal to take us into a 25-12 lead, which we kept until ten minutes from the end.
Then, almost in the flash of an eye, the Hawks responded with two converted tries to cut our lead to one point and to set up a frantic finish which had fans of both clubs on the edge of their seats.
We held on and as the players left the pitch many of our fans were waiting on the running track that surrounds it to hug and back-slap their heroes. A fantastic night to be an Oldham fan and one which kick starts what has the potential to be an amazing play-off series.
See you at York !
Scorers at Hunslet: Oldham — drop goal, Crowley; goals, Roper (4); tries, Ford, Bloomfield, Langtree, Ward; Hunslet — goals, March (4); tries, J Coyle, Oakes, March, Duffy.
Hunslet: Watson; Duffy, Maun, Brickwood, Duckworth; T Coyle, J Coyle; Moore, March, Haley, Oakes, Lyons, Mackay; Subs: Stenchion, Houston, Hood, Peltier.
Oldham: Nield; Clay, Cookson, Ford, Bloomfield; Palfrey, Roper; Joy, Owen, Boults, Crowley, Langtree, Thompson. Subs: Ward, Mason, Hughes, Tyson.
Ref: Chris Kendall; Att: 748