Whitehaven Match Report
‘Haven get a Bear Scare!
Whitehaven RLFC 32 Coventry Bears 18
Recreation Ground, Sunday.
By Mike Hyde
Whitehaven, were sitting at the top of the table before this match started, and were still on top when the game finished.
However, what happened between those two moments in time says more about the Bears than about the home side.
For large parts of the game it wasn’t easy to work out which side was league leaders, such was the performance of Tom Tsang’s team against strong opposition.
After a five hour coach journey, the Bears took a while to settle and in the first minute they conceded a try to Andrew Bulman, which failed to yield a conversion.
The Bears were edging their way back into the game when Bulman struck again, but another missed conversion meant the score was just 8-0.
Nick Newman, Bears’ star player of the game, stepped up again, zipping through the home defence for a try. Ever reliable he took and achieved his own conversion.
His tally grew by a further two points as he successfully took a penalty awarded to the Bears
The Bears realised the re was no great gulf between the sides and their game steadily improved, with Sam Davis stunning the home crowd with a try just before half time.
Newman’s conversion set the score at 8-14 as the half time hooter sounded.
Although the Bears continued to play well, any chance of a shock victory against the league leaders ebbed away after a quick brace of tries from Sam Forrester, one of which was successfully converted to give the home side a 16-14 lead.
But still the Bears were in the game. That is until ‘Haven stepped up a gear and scored three tries in a ten minute spell deep into the second half.
James Mossop scored forst in the blitz, then Jake Moore added two tries, but only one conversion from three put the home side on 32 points, their final haul.
Never-say-die Bears would still not give in and Elliot Hall crossed over with five minutes to go, but that was too latefor a real comeback and the League leaders were relieved to gain a 32-18 victory.
For the Bears there had been the high point of being in the lead at half time and genuinely threatening a shock victory, but ultimately there was disappointment and they need to gather their strength to go back to Cumbria this weekend, with Workinton Town being the next opponents.