Clinical Craig fires treble

Scalby Vs Whitby''140938r
Scalby Vs Whitby''140938r

Whitby Rugby Club returned to league action on Saturday at Scalby Reserves, looking for three points to ignite their title charge.

The game started with RFC having plenty of the ball but being pressed hard by a enthusiastic Scalby side.

Scalby Vs Whitby''140938p

Scalby Vs Whitby''140938p

Unbeaten Club created half chances and were frustrated by the stubborn hosts who made life difficult.

Scalby took the lead on 20 minutes when a long ball was allowed to bounce to the right hand side of the area to the unmarked James Truly who took a touch and fired past Carl Oliver despite the best efforts of Harry Smith to block it.

Club were growing frustrated as Scalby closing down early and restricted their chances. Smith went into the book for a late challenge and two minutes later, Paul Jobling went past two defenders but was brought down on the edge of the area when ready to shoot, only for the referee to wave play on.

Boss Ste Mothersdale encouraged his side to keep believing that the openings would come, to show character and turn it around.

Scalby Vs Whitby''140938q

Scalby Vs Whitby''140938q

Within a minute of the restart, Hogarth forced a corner which Paul Jobling crossed in to the near post for skipper Damon Craig to hit home first time from six yards out.

That was the catalyst for an onslaught as Jobling, Craig and Inglis all had shots saved.

The Scalby keeper produced the save of the game on 55 minutes when Inglis, playing a one-two with Hogarth, crossed for Usher who turned in the six-yard box and smashed towards the bottom corner, only for the keeper to turn the ball round a post.

He then denied Smith who curled a shot towards the top corner but again produced an excellent save.

Scalby Vs Whitby''140938m

Scalby Vs Whitby''140938m

The pressure finally told as the marauding Inglis went on a mazy run and found Craig just inside the area and he smashed home his second.

Craig was at it again moments later, beating the offside trap and unleashing a shot from 20 yards. His shot came back off the crossbar to Craig who chested down and drilled home for his second hat-trick in a week.

Scalby weren’t beaten yet, working the ball down the left flank to Turley whose 30 yard lob towards the top corner saw Oliver make a super save. But RFC sealed the game as the tireless Chad Swales passed to brother Dave who played into Steven Ross.

He passed to Ben Hogarth who raced into the area and planted under the onrushing keeper for 4-1. With the game won, Smith on a yellow card and top scorer Jobling carrying a knock, Crabtree and Dan Smith came on.

Usher finished the scoring when put through one-on-one and placing into the bottom right hand corner to carry on the unbeaten league record.

Boss Mothersdale said: “The first half was frustrating as they came out at a hundred miles an hour, charging us down and pressing us. We didn’t get going and were forcing it rather than keeping the short accurate passing to take control of the game.

“These teams are eager to end our unbeaten run and get 11 men behind the ball and celebrated wildly when taking the lead so I know we’re seen as a major scalp.

“That’s a credit to the lads for the strides we have made.”

“I believed we would turn it around in second half and our quality shone through. We were superb second half and they struggled to live with our attacking play.”

Mothersdale said James Inglis was superb at left back and only a clinical hat-trick by skipper Craig denied him man of the match.

RFC now look forward to the semi-final of the Frank White Cup at home to Athletico 2B.

Scalby Reserves 1 Whitby RFC 5