Only the Eton wall game would come close to the conditions experienced at Morpeth’s very muddy pitch with rain off and on for the whole game. How the referee (Finlay Brown, a 20 year old Newcastle University student who had an excellent game) coped and was able to distinguish the players as the game wore on is all credit to him.
Northern’s performance was considerably better than last week at Sheffield and they could have won but for fine defence by Morpeth, defence being far easier than offence. Twice held up over the line Northern just could not quite come up with a try to win the game.
Northern led with a penalty by full back Harry Clark after just 4 minutes but Morpeth replied with a try in the corner brilliantly converted by Kieran Brown, their 18 year old fly half. Harry Clark reduced the arrears with another penalty only to miss a further penalty right on half time.
Possession in the second half was dominated by Northern but the difficult conditions prevented Northern from obtaining a crucial score. Morpeth did kick a penalty on a very rare visit to the Northern half.
This was a disappointing result as the game doubled up as a County Cup tie but a fine debut by Ed Cawthorn and the return of last season’s captain, Jon Coffey, strengthened the squad.
Our next game is against fellow league strugglers Middlesbrough at Northern on February 8th