Northallerton II 26 - 11 Saxons
Sedgefield made the trip down to Northallerton a few players short, with the hosts agreeing to even up the sides to get a competitive and fair game. Northallerton's pitch was heavy, but deemed playable, and it was an all North Yorkshire front row that gave Sedgefield a platform to play from.
As expected of the strong home side, they started well, scoring a converted try in the early moments of the game. Sedgefield continued unfazed, playing the game in the noted Saxons way - ignoring the water bottles rushed on, instead, using the short break in play to pass around a bottle of port. As the game aged the Saxons seemed to settle into their playing style, and began making some yards in possession. At the first opportunity in the game, fly half for the day Andy Shepherd found time to place an accurate chip over the top of the Northallerton defense, with Lewis White finishing in the corner on his return from a lengthy injury. Shepherd continued the first half with good game management: allowing the strong center pairing to make good ground and capitalising on penalties won by the Saxon back row.
Sedgefield went into the break in good spirits, with one eye on the closer than expected scoreboard, and one on the second bottle of port that appeared on the sideline.
The story of the second half was Northallerton's ability to starve Sedgefield of possession. Two second half yellow cards for Sedgefield paved the way for a very well drilled set of backs to run in tries. Northallerton, however, still respected Sedgefield as they went forwards, again, the Saxon centers doing the damage - but with no reward.
Praise must be given to the lads who traveled down and played the game in their usual good spirit, especially against a team of Northallerton's caliber. The game ended in a 26-11 defeat, despite that Sedgefield Saxons left the pitch with smiles on their faces - maybe it was a result of a hard fought game, or maybe it was the fact there was still half a bottle of port left, and more rugby on TV in the clubhouse.
[unfortunately there are no images of this game. we didn't take any front row players, never mind a photographer.]