Roundhegians 21-57 Beverley
Much better by Beverley and at last the convincing victory they have frequently threatened this season but not delivered. How much of the winning margin today was due to Beverley’s superior quality and how much to that of the opposition, who are without a win this season, is a matter of conjecture. But Beverley’s supremacy was most emphatic even though their game was not entirely without its usual frustrating errors, especially in the first half. After half an hour they could easily have been out of sight but instead found themselves trailing 19-21. It was all a bit frenetic with passes thrown hastily and not well directed and their play generally not well controlled. However, after going behind they did begin to turn on the style and by half time had gone into a twelve-point lead. Thereafter it was plain sailing and they romped away with it.
Beverley got off to the perfect start when Jacob Baggs went over in the corner after only two minutes with Rob Smith adding a fine conversion from the touchline. Another converted try, this time a thrilling run-in at pace from halfway by Jake Boardman, took them further ahead. But with Beverley this season you can never feel entirely confident that things will not suddenly all start to fall apart.
When they play with ball in hand they can look devastating but too often they kick away possession needlessly and pay the price. An ill-judged kick upfield followed by some poor tackling let Roundhegians in for a converted try to narrow the gap. Baggs, turning up on the opposite wing, did score his second try to take them two scores clear again but Beverley twice again gave away possession and Roundhegians capitalised to score two more converted tries and thereby take the lead. Beverley went ahead again through the outstanding Boardman with a dazzling try from deep in his own half and after that, they never really looked back. On the stroke of halftime Baggs, taking an inside pass from Smith, went over for his third try and Beverley turned round 33-21 up.
After the break, it was more or less all one-way traffic. Roundhegians played with plenty of spirit and adventure but the Beverley line was seldom threatened in the second half. Beverley’s play was altogether less frenetic and much better controlled than in the first half with some excellent tackling and movement. Smith kicked an early penalty and Joe Slater scored after he had charged down a Roundhegians clearance kick. Another fine individual effort brought Boardman his third try to bring up the fifty points. Andy Meagher on as a substitute rounded it off with a try after Beverley had mounted a sustained attack down their left. Of Beverley’s eight tries Smith converted seven, adding to an all-round fine personal game for the Beverley skipper.
The Beverley side as a whole had a much improved day with several outstanding individual performances. Some of the tries were mouth-watering in their execution. Boardman and Baggs with three tries each clearly caught the eye and there was some exciting running by Luke Hazell and the backline as a whole. Young Jake Marin, getting his first start for the senior side on the wing, tackled and ran well though not many opportunities came his way. The return of Joey Franklin at scrum half with his fast and accurate delivery has undoubtedly given the backline more scope to use its outstanding pace.
But perhaps the most satisfying aspect of the day was the splendid performance of the Beverley pack which as a unit gave it everything, especially in the second half. They tackled ferociously and controlled their game with verve and with a welcome absence of the ill-discipline which has all too often bedevilled them in recent weeks. Altogether this was a thoroughly satisfying day for Beverley. There is no game next week but there then follow two home fixtures both of which they will regard as winnable.