Good workout for Lurgan pack


LURGAN Seconds took on Civil Service Seconds in a friendly at Pollock Park last Saturday and ran out convincing winners in the end.

However, as rugby matches are only termed friendlies as there are no points at stake, both sides took this game totally seriously.

The home side did prove to be the stronger on the day overall. Three minutes in and outhalf Josh McKay slotted his frst penalty of the day. This was followed four minutes later when a further infringement by the visitors gave him another opportunity to take the three points on offer. The Lurgan forwards showed their intentions and after 15 minutes, the ball was picked up at the back of a five metre scrum and driven forward. From the ensuing maul, loosehead prop Graham Wickie crashed over for the score. Unfortunately McKay could not add the extra two points.

Both sides played some good rugby but it was Lurgan who spread the ball more and used the spaces created. In the 25th minute, such a move saw the ball go wide and winger Dawid Stanczak scored in the corner. On 35 minutes the visitors got on the scoresheet when they were awarded a penalty following an accidental offside

For the second week in a row the scrums were reduced to uncontested as the Civil Service tight head prop was forced to retire with a back injury

In the second half Lurgan really took to the game and began to dominate and six minutes into the half a move covering the width of the pitch saw Stanczak powering over in the corner for his second score of the day. Three minutes later centre Peter Foster made one of his trademark barnstorming breaks through the middle. From the resultant breakdown, the ball was fed to scrum half Andy Stevenson and he scrambled over for another try.

The forwards were not to be out done and on 17 minutes number 8 Richie Shilliday broke from a ruck. He made good ground and fed to second row Peter Stewart who was sprinting up in support. He ducked the tackles and went over for the try. Two minutes later full back Chris Walmsley jinked his way through the centre. The ball made its way to winger Jack Wilson and he forced himself over the line. McKay added the two points.

On the 30th minute Stewart again made an excellent break from deep. Good support play got the ball fed out to centre Peter Foster and he was over the line. Soon after a similar move involving both forwards and backs with excellent supporting play got Foster’s fellow centre Peter Mitchell in for the last score of the day.

While all 15 players put in a huge effort, stand out players were centre Peter Foster who dominated the middle of the park with his crashing breaks and tackles; second row Peter Stewart who popped up everywhere in support and flanker Andrew Calvert who’s tackle count on the day was immense.

On several occasions he was solely responsible halting the visitors attack with well timed and run stopping tackles. While unavailable himself due to work commitments, again captain David Harvey can be rightly pleased with his teams efforts.