Selby 38-6 Beverley

The trip to Selby for the Beavers was always going to be a tough challenge, the physicality of the Selby pack and their ever-improving form in the league would always be a big test, especially for a Beverley team that has only won once this side of Christmas, however, there was some hope as the weather relented the sun shone and the pitch was firm, although a little billowy there was a chance that Beverley’s own style of play might be allowed, and there was a sense of genuine hope that a victory might be achievable. Once again however having shown lots of heart throughout the game, Beverley were beaten by a better team who showed good organisation skills and had the aggression in the breakdown and passing play that broke the spirits of the travelling team, final score 38-6.

The first half was a more even battle, but most of the possession was with Selby and Beverley once again found themselves having to defend their lines, which they did well for big periods of the game. After 14 minutes the first breakthrough came for the home team after a forceful crash over converted try from close quarters. Four minutes later after a ruck infringement, Phil Duboulay was able to close the gap with a penalty kick, 7-3 to the home team. On 24 minutes came the try of the match, from deep in their half Selby recovered the ball from a Beverley attack and moved quickly with great interchange down the right-hand side of the field aided by a couple of weak tackle attempts to score an unconverted try. Selby’s aggressive play around the breakdowns was impressive and won them plenty of ball, but it came at a price that was a further penalty on 28 minutes for Duboulay and then a couple of consecutive yellow cards before half-time which again gave the Beavers some hope as they went into the break 12-6, and the game was still very much in the balance.

Unfortunately for the Beavers, it wasn’t in the balance for long. Beverley failed to deal with the kick-off, the ball was turned over moved quickly to the right corner for a try on 41 minutes, three minutes later Selby marched up the field again with little opposition in broken play, this time to score a converted try, these two body blows so soon in the second period effectively killed off the Beavers hopes of claiming the spoils, although the effort was there throughout and their heads did not drop, quite simply Selby were dominant in almost all of the features of the game. Forty-four minutes in and the score was 24-6.

Beverley’s man of the match performance was from Joey Franklin, scrum-half who battled fearlessly to try and distribute a ball that wasn’t easily secured, but unfortunately, his game was cut short on 55 minutes when the Selby number eight came around the ruck to illegally take out Franklin, his leg buckled in what looked to be a very painful knee and ankle injury. After being stretchered off Joey was able to confirm it didn’t just look painful!

Beverley reshaped and brought on the substitutes, 11 minutes later ironically the same number eight crashed over for a try under the posts, which later in the bar he admitted was short of the line, but the game was already out of reach for the Beavers. On the 70th minute an unfortunate turnaround in the kick and chase went from Beverley’s favour to Selby’s and the deflection landed perfectly for them to score their sixth and final try of the afternoon which was well converted, 38-6. There would have been a 7th try if it wasn’t for a brilliant tackle from full-back Luke Hazell, after an 80-yard break from the home team which looked certain to be finished, a couple of minutes later Hazell also hooked-up with Lewis Fryer on the wing and got agonisingly close to scoring what would have been Beverley’s one try of the afternoon, but the Selby scramble defence was up to the challenge.

Once again the effort and commitment from the Beavers could not be faulted, who were simply beaten by a stronger Selby team who were deserved winners and are pushing for promotion. Our best wishes for a speedy recovery go to Joey Franklin who is a wonderful young local talent and wears his heart on his sleeve whenever he puts on the green and white jersey, alas we think he will not be around for the rest of the season – enjoy your time in A&E Joey. Beverley are back at home next week against Leodiensian’s, there is also an old boys reunion so the atmosphere will be especially good, come and join in!

Brian Gilbert