We welcomed our long standing friends from Alnwick to McCracken Park for what, even at this stage of the season, was being classed as a “relegation battle”.
Although Northern was dominant for long periods of the game the Alnwick backs were a danger throughout and until the final whistle the result was always in doubt.
After the kick-off Northern spent 20 minutes within the Alnwick 22 but could not get over the try line. Alnwick eventually broke clear and put their left wing, Shell, into space to scored an excellent try. Crucially, as it turned out, the try was not converted.
Due to various Alnwick indiscretions Northern's Donal Collins made Alnwick pay with 5 excellent penalties.
The Northern lineout was dominant to deny Alnwick possession although from a quick tap penalty Alnwick’s scrum half, Moralee, sped away and put in the flanker, Hamilton, to score wide out – this again was not converted.
With just minutes to go the referee’s watch seemed to tick slower and slower to add to the tension for both sets of supporters. Donal Collins had a penalty which narrowly missed only for Alnwick to run the ball and cause anxious moments in the home camp. However an excellent tackle by Harry Clark (who had played well all afternoon) snuffed out the breakaway for Northern to win 15 – 13.
The Andy Bell trophy was presented to a relieved Northern skipper after the game.