Saturday 1st April – Morpeth Stags 28, Blaydon Bricks 7

A depleted but battling Bricks side lost to a 30 man (or thereabouts) Stags squad who were out to enjoy their last match of the season in a well contested match where the Stags just had a bit too much firepower.

Morpeth opened the scoring early on with a well worked try finished by their (quite quick) supersized centre – apparently a former Penrith 1st teamer and quite a handful. The conversion made the score 7 – 0 to the Stags. Blaydon responded well at the restart with a good attack down the left wing initiated by Damian Ameer-Beg who had a good game all round. Good handling support from several players led to a lineout in the Stags 22 and a catch and forward drive led to a try by Keith Winter.  James Murray (another who had a sound game) landed a great conversion from wide out on the left to make it 7 – 7.

The game developed into an entertaining match that was mainly contested in the middle of the park with good play from both sides in both attack and defence. The Blaydon scrum stood up well in the face of a big Morpeth 8 and Rob Pyle was prominent in making any number of big tackles from the back row.  Eventually pressure from the Stags led to a 5metre scrum which was duly won by Morpeth and a try followed after powerful short range break from the scrum half. This was converted 14 – 7 to the Stags.

Aaron Poad made a surging break after picking up a Morpeth error and combined well with Damian A to make good ground for the Bricks. Unfortunately they could not capitalise on this and the game returned to the pattern of before only to be broken by another powerful attack down the middle of the field by the Stags backs resulting in another try. Again this was converted. 21-7 to the Stags.

A couple of changes were made at half time – one positional – but options were limited for the Bricks whereas a lot of fresh legs appeared for the Stags after half time.

On the restart the game quickly re-established itself as a tightly fought contest albeit with a lot of pressure on the Blaydon line. GREAT defence from the Blaydon side kept the Stags at bay (corny but couldn’t resist it!) and the home side were repelled several times when a try looked certain. Everyone played their part in this and it was great to watch. Then Windy ‘entered’ a maul from the side and, having been previously warned (so said the ref in a post-match interview!) a yellow card was shown. A very aggrieved Bricks captain left the field followed by the Stags forward who had formed an inviting doorway (or as Windy explained … an offside target) for his drive into the maul. Neither would return to the match.  Stu Reay took over the captaincy and marshalled his team well to provide stiff resistance.

More Morpeth pressure followed and, almost inevitably a try was scored following a 5m scrum – this time through an outnumbered centre field. Converted again. 28 – 7

Keith Oliver replaced Windy after the 10 minute sin bin was completed and the game continued as a good contest until the final whistle with both sides keen to play good hard rugby.

Well done to the Stags – you played well and were sporting opponents. Great stuff from the Bricks – an enjoyable game to watch lots of pride and determination shown all round.

Match report by Phil Partington – going to have to get this stopped, it actually reflects what happened in the game…….



  1. Tom Hirst
  2. Keith Winter
  3. Brian Penny
  4. Arron Poad
  5. Jack Inglis
  6. Ian Bennie
  7. Rob Pyle
  8. Windy (Keith Oliver – about 55 mins)
  9. Stu Reay
  10. James Murray (Lewis Hill – half time)
  11. Mickey Bell (James Murray – half time)
  12. Steve Davidson.
  13. Phil Divers
  14. Damien A
  15. Hopey