DMP’s back line had a new look with Emma Lloyd Edwards at 9, Fi Davidson at 10, Jen Lloyd Edwards at 11 Rebecca Scholes at 12, Katy McLean at 13, Mackenzie Thomas at 14 and Ruth Laybourn at 15, the changes were brought about by the unavailability of captain George Roberts who was injured in the previous game against Richmond.
The captain’s armband was given to Tamara Taylor who always puts in a captains performance and was the perfect choice to lead out the troops.
Katy McLean got us under way with a high hanging kick which Saracens caught and ran straight back towards DMP and so began a game of high intensity.
After 10 minutes the game was even with both teams competing ferociously at the break down.
Saracens began to ramp up the pressure with DMP forced to defend deep in their own half. DMP’s girls didn’t take a backwards step as Saracens launched wave after wave of attack only to be thwarted by determined defence and Katy McLean’s relieving right boot.
With 15 mins gone Maggie Alphonsi took a pass and raced up field to release speedy winger Seraphine Okemba who sprinted 50 metres to score under the posts, the try was converted by McKenna leaving the score DMP 0 Saracens 7.
DMP continued to fight and showed great determination forcing Saracens backwards, the team commitment was epitomised by Lisa Cockburn who had to go off with a blood injury after a nasty clash.
With 25 mins gone the score remained the same with DMP Battling hard to contain a Saracens side playing with great flair and skill.
On 35 mins the pressure told when Saracens broke through DMP’s defence, the ball was passed out to Okemba who again showed a great turn of speed to cross the line out wide right for her second try the conversion was missed leaving the score DMP 0 Saracens 12
Saracens has their tails up and another great break by Alphonsi who raced through passed the ball out to her winger who accelerated and looked certain to score only for her to be caught by the speedy Jen Lloyd Edwards who stopped a certain try, she secured the ball allowing it to be cleared.
With 5 mins to go Saracens were awarded a scrum which marched DMP backwards allowing Poppy Cleall to dot down for their third try which was converted leaving the score at half time DMP 0 Saracens 17
Katy McLean restarted the game with a fantastic high kick allowing her team to compete for the ball with the ever willing Ruth Nash competing well in the air only unfortunately to be adjudged to have taken the player out illegally leading to a yellow card on the stroke of half time leaving the score at DMP 0 Saracens 17.
DMP came out for the second half with Fi Davidson reverting back her normal position at 9 with Katy McLean back at fly half the changes had an immediate effect on the game as DMP pushed Saracens back deep into their half.
Saracens well organised defence kept DMP at bay as they continued to build pressure, a knock on by DMP relieved the pressure and allowed Saracens to clear their lines.
A change for DMP as Lois Brown came on to make her debut premiership appearance for DMP and she immediately made an impact with a crunching tackle on Maggie Alphonsi.
DMP started to enjoy a period of possession and a great break by Katy McLean got DMP deep into Saracens half, DMP secured the ball which was passed out quickly by Davidson to McLean who’s quick hands got the ball to Scholes who somehow got the ball to Jen Lloyd Edwards despite the close attention of Vicky Fleetwood, Edwards scored in the corner, not converted to leave the score DMP 5 Saracens 17.
DMP had their tails up now and started to takes risks pushing for another try, Saracens soaked up the pressure secured the ball and with quick hands through the backs released Okemba who again raced through to score her third try which wasn’t converted leaving the score DMP 5 Saracens 22.
From the restart Saracens caught the ball racing up field, the tackle was made but the ball was off load out of the tackle to Vicky Fleetwood who scored under the post, the conversion was added leaving the score DMP 5 Saracens 29
With time running out Maggie Alphonsi found holes in DMPs defence and got the ball away for Saracen’s to score which wasn’t converted leaving the score DMP 5 Saracens 34
It was a full blooded game of rugby with a high level of skill showed by both teams and a great advert for women’s rugby.
DMP Durham Sharks
|30/11/2014||2:00 pm||Women's Premiership||2014-15|
|The Northern Echo Arena|
|The Northern Echo Arena, Neasham Road, Darlington, County Durham, DL2 1DL|