Sandal show spirit as they earn bonus point in high scoring loss

Macclesfield proved to be yet another difficult side for Sandal to overcome in the North Premier, although they could be proud of their spirited performance, particularly in the second half which they won to secure a much-needed bonus point.

Friday, 22nd October 2021, 8:00 am
Sandal forwards in the thick of the action at Macclesfield. Picture: Simon Hall

The game ended 51-32 to the home team, but both sides were applauded off by all after a match that was a credit to Macclesfield and Sandal for the rugby spirit and prowess on show.

It started badly for the visitors when they conceded a try in the first minute with Macclesfield’s number eight scything his way through to score under the posts for a try that duly converted.

Sandal regathered and competed well until they were pinned back and had to compete in a Macclesfield scrum in front of their posts, which resulted in a pushover converted try that made it 14-0 after 16 minutes.

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Sandal go for a try against Macclesfield. Picture: Simon Hall

The visitors then lost a player to a yellow card and within two minutes Macclesfield took advantage to score their third try and extend their lead to 19 points.

Sandal replied well as Will Morecambe touched down, but their opponents went over for another converted try just before half-time to take their lead to 26-5 at the midway point.

The second half started better for the visitors when five minutes in Luke Punton landed a penalty.

However, a Sandal relieving kick found a home side player who started an attacking move which resulted in a try in the corner and Sandal were again on the back foot.

Sandal forward Adam Hopkinson takes the attack to Macclesfield. Picture: Simon Hall

They dug in, though, and following a penalty line-out on the home side’s 5m line Austen Thompson crashed over with Punton’s conversion cutting their deficit to 31-15.

In the 55th minute Sandal kicked ahead and this time Macclesfield fumbled the ball with Jack Handley able to gather to score in the corner.

Things were looking good now for Sandal and when Jack Handley finished off a telling move across the back line to score a bonus point try they were right back in the contest at 31-25.

But with 14 minutes left Macclesfield hit back with a penalty then scored a converted try to push their lead back out to 16 points.

There was still time for a superb break and try by Luke Adams in the 77th minute. But Macclesfield had the last say with two further tries in the game’s dying minutes to complete their deserved victory.

Sandal are back at home when they host York this Saturday.