National Conference: Siddal impress at Rochdale

Siddal's George Ambler
Siddal's George Ambler

Siddal produced their best all-round performance so far this season to win 46-22 away to Rochdale Mayfield.

They remain seventh in the National Conference League’s Premier Division with four wins from seven outings.

A strong performance from the forwards and solid defence laid the foundations for their young backs to express themselves.

The only disappointment was that the Halifax side conceded 10 points in the last two minutes.

The visitors started very strongly with skipper George Ambler leading from the front. Canaan Smithies, Ben Hinsley, Jack Georgiou, Danny Williams and Sean McCormack all got their hands on the ball in the opening two sets as Siddal dominated from the first whistle.

With the home side penned in their own 25, Siddal forced a drop out and the ball was quickly moved through Joe Martin, Christian Ackroyd and Freddy Walker, who gave Henry Turner the space to put Olly Lewis over in the corner after five minutes.

The visitors kept up the pressure and Georgiou made a great break and looked certain to score but was tackled on the line and an interception cost Siddal their threatening position.

Home hooker Cole Connolly burrowed over from dummy half after 21 minutes and Zac Baker’s conversion put Mayfield 6-4 up against the run of play.

Siddal’s lead was restored when a trademark Smithies charge was supported by McCormack before Ambler sent the rampaging Georgiou over the line. Joe Martin converted for a 10-6 lead after 25 minutes.

Siddal continued to the meet the Mayfield challenge and Iain Davies started to gain ground with every drive. He was supported by Dom Booth, who drove deep into home territory, before Danny Rushworth and Joe Martin created the space for full back Walker to run a great line straight through the Mayfield defence and touch down after 30 minutes. Martin added the conversion to increased the lead to 10 points.

Mayfield were showing glimpses of their attacking capability with Luke Fowden, Mark Biggins and Lewis Butterworth prominent but they couldn’t break through.

Siddal ran riot in the opening 20 minutes of the second half. Lewis Hosty was first to touch down after 44 minutes when his determination took him past two defenders. Martin converted and added a penalty after Davies was impeded to stretch the lead to 24-6.

It was all Siddal now and Hosty sped over again on 55 minutes after more good play between half backs Martin and Ackroyd.

Mayfield were under severe pressure and an Ackroyd kick on the last tackle was supported by Oliver Lewis who tackled the home winger behind the line to force a drop out.

It resulted in another try, following quick hands, as Henry Turner touched down in the corner on 58 minutes. Martin’s great conversion made it 34-6.

Mayfield hit back as enterprising play from Dec Sheridan put Munya Samanyanga in the clear and he scorched over from 60 yards out. Baker converted.

The visitors hit back on 72 minutes as McCormack burrowed over from acting half back and four minutes later Ambler side-stepped over the line from 20 yards out. Martin improved both scores.

To their credit Mayfield ended the game strongly and scored the last two tries.

Siddal host a Lock Lane side who are just above them in the table next Saturday.