Reserves 29 – 24 Widnes

Date published: Monday, September 26, 2011

WELL done, Houghie and the boys! While our 29-24 Grand Final win against Widnes Vikings in the Reserves Under-23s Championship was not exactly the most stylish performance we’ve produced at this level this season, it was more than enough to bring silverware to the club for the first time in eight years, discounting the Law Cup and the SEAT Trophy which we won in pre-season.

For the record, these were the boys who brought home the bacon:

Steve Nield; Zac Cotton, Matthew Fogarty, David Cookson, Terry Bridge; Tommy Connick, Jamie Dallimore; Danny Langtree, Kenny Hughes, Michael Ward, Chris Dean, Jamie Knight (capt), Alex Thompson. Subs: Scott Mansfield, Alex Eyres, Phil Joy, Matty Barber.

[singlepic id=972 w=320 h=240 float=left]Terry Bridge made it a final to remember for him personally by scoring three tries, while Jamie Dallimore made it a cracking day for the former Wigan St Cuthbert’s lads by winning the man-of-the-match award, chosen by the Press, and chipping in with a drop goal, a try and four conversions.

Terry’s 12 points and Jamie’s 13 meant they scored 25 of the 29 points between them, the remaining four coming from a try by Alex Thompson, who raced clear on Dallimore’s well-timed pass early in the second half.

Jamie also provided the well-weighted kick which created Terry’s third try ten minutes from the end and gave us what we thought at the time would be a comfortable 29-18 lead with not much time left.

How wrong can you be? Three minutes later Jack Smith powered in for his third try of the game and we found ourselves defending big style in the last few minutes with Vikings needing only one converted try to snatch the lead.

It needed a massive and collective effort by every member of the team to keep the visitors at bay. And when referee Joe Cobb blew the final whistle it was time for the celebrations to begin.

B-J Mather, the former Wigan star and now head of player development at the RFL, presented individual winners’ and losers’ medals and also handed Dally his man-of-the-match award before the big moment came when Jamie Knight, our captain, stepped up to lift the trophy high in the air.

[singlepic id=999 w=320 h=240 float=left]For Houghie, Ashy and the reserves it was the perfect end to a season of hard work and sweat.

Each player was welcomed into the social club by a chorus of chanting from the fans, then club chairman Chris said a few words before introducing on stage Jamie Dallimore as man-of-the-match winner, Jamie Knight as captain and then Houghie as coach, who also invited Ashy to join hi.

Chris gave a “massive thank-you” to all the fans in an attendance of 608 and said that all the hard work put in by Houghie, his backroom team and the players had paid off big style with a memorable championship win.