Burnley RUFC find a way to win ugly in atrocious weather conditions

Burnley's Bran Richmond on the attack for the Under 11s against North Ribblesdale
Burnley's Bran Richmond on the attack for the Under 11s against North Ribblesdale

Burnley eventually won a game played in atrocious conditions at Holden Road last Saturday by the closest of margins against Ashton-under-Lyne.

The phrase “winning ugly” was never more apt as the home side initially attempted to maintain their attractive brand of rugby, when a more conservative game would have sufficed.

The weather conditions meant the error count was always going to be high, and playing open rugby was a risky strategy.

Burnley started well, as Christian Allanson was given a try after a good drive, despite the referee being unsighted and missing him dropping the ball after some ferocious Ashton-under-Lyne defence.

That was about the last piece of luck the home side got. Sam Moussey, in his last game for the Blue and Golds, added the kick, and things looked promising.

The poor weather and light meant it was a day for precision and playing territorially, which the visitors did, as they replied with a penalty.

Burnley struggled to build momentum as mistakes, some forced, meant they lost possession and allowed the visitors to keep in touch.

An exchange of penalties meant it was soon 10-6, and before the half Ashton added another penalty.

Early in the second half they lost a player to the sin bin after a late tackle.

Ashton then won a penalty and took the lead late in the game, but Burnley upped their game, and after Richard Murray was deemed to be held up, with the referee playing advantage, Burnley were awarded a penalty which Matt Crowley scored.

The visitors weren’t done, and after winning a penalty, their otherwise reliable kicker just missed the post. Burnley didn’t play at their best but still won 13-12.

The seconds went down to Aldwinians 36-25. Ryan Bradley with a brace and Will Yip were Burnley’s try scorers.

Skipper Ferguson weighed in with two conversions and drop goals, and the returning Pete Timberlake was man of the match.

The thirds had a 29-7 win at home to Tyldesley. Burnley’s scorers in a dominant display were Charlie Haynes, Ben Williamson, Dom Leck, Matt Fisher and the returning Jack Stockdale. Joe Parkinson added a conversion.

The Under 13s had an excellent 32-7 win at Liverpool St Helens. Burnley’s scorers were Chris Knowles, Reece Bonnet, Joshua Milligan, Henry Wilkes, Jack Irving and Henry Smales. Sam Wold added a conversion.

The Under 11s travelled to Yorkshire for a triangular tournament, beating North Ribblesdale 12-0 with scores from skipper Morgan Williams and Bran Richmond. Williams added a conversion.

The second match saw them beat hosts Skipton 18-7 with tries from Callum Kirby, and Richmond. Williams added two conversions.

The tags and Under 9s attended the same tournament, with promising debuts for Matthew Middleton, Frank Warrender and Miles Carr-Oddie for the tags. Sam Shackleton was man of the match for the Under 9s.

Burnley’s first team travel to Trafford tomorrow, the seconds host Lymm and the thirds travel to Blackpool, all 2-15 p.m. kick-offs.

On Sunday the tags and Under 11s are at Orrell, the Under 9s are training, and the Under 13s host Colne, all 11 a.m. kick- offs. Thursday sees the Junior Rugby Christmas Party take place.