Olney beaten by Market Harborough in first home league game of season
Report by Jim Ford
OLNEY vs. MARKET HARBOROUGH Sat. 23rd. Sept. 2017.
Olney were at home on Saturday for their second league game of the season.
The home side kicked off and looked to have the advantage in the forward encounters, taking the ball to the visitor's goal line. They failed to convert possession into points and the visitors looked dangerous when they had hands on the ball.
Both sides were guilty of conceding penalties, and both took the touchline option to gain territory when awarded in their favour. The home side were unable to claim clean ball on their throw in, often losing it to the visitor's advantage.
Olney were denied the services of one of their most enterprising three-quarters, when Hamish Bull had to leave the field having suffered a head injury. Kieran Manson came off the bench to replace him.
The first points were put on the scoreboard by Mkt. Harboro', from a try by Ed Parker at '13', converted by Joe Whitworth. Score: Olney 0, Mkt. Harboro' 7. (35mins.) (incl. 7 mins. injury time).
The visitors counter attacked from the kick off and were soon rewarded with a second try from Parker, converted by Whitworth, extending their lead to Olney 0, Mkt. Harboro' 14. After 42 mins. (incl. injury time).
The referee's whistle was busy, both sides guilty of infringements, making for constant interruptions. Mkt. Harboro' managed to squeeze in another try from Parker, just on half time. No conversion. Olney 0, Mkt. Harboro' 19.
HALF TIME: OLNEY 0. MARKET HARBOROUGH 19
The second half, from the kick off by Mkt. Harboro', continued along much the same lines as the first. After seven minutes play Parker increased his tally to four tries, this one also unconverted. Olney 0, Mkt. Harboro' 24.
Olney rang the changes, Jake Ashton and Mark Austin coming off, Graham Smith and Cameron Kok going on.
Despite a lot of effort and one or two enterprising individual attacks from the backline, Olney failed to breech the visitor's defence. Gareth Cahill and George Stanton attempted to make some impression from the pack and when given the opportunity to drive the maul. There was never quite enough, back up or initiative. Marcus Goss was doing his bit, but needed attention from the physio, and when Jordan Letts had to leave the field Olney's scoring possibilities seemed to have evaporated.
Mkt. Harboro' had no such reservations and further increased their score when, following the introduction of their subs. Steff Ziemelise added a further, unconverted, try. Score: Olney 0, Mkt. Harboro' 29.
The final quarter was survived by the hosts, without further score.
(Footnote: The visitors '14 managed, on more than one occasion, to get over the goal line having dropped the ball on the way!)
FULL TIME: OLNEY 0. MARKET HARBOROUGH 29.
TEAM: Jim Osborn (capt.) Jake Ashton, Jeremiah Shields, George Stanton, Mark Austin, Sam Spruce, Ryan Hammett, Gareth Cahill.
Rich Cowan, Jordan Letts, Jake Deighton, Hamish Bull, Marcus Goss, Lloyd Sweeney, Phil Powell.
SUBS: Graham Smith, Kieran Manson, Cameron Kok.
TEAM SPONSOR: DESMOND J. SMAIL LTD.