Blues 40 v 30 Cov (H)
Tries: Milnthorpe 2, Peplinski 2, Sellars, Williets, Calver
Goals: Williets 6
With no Maroons game this week, all eyes were on the Blues as they took on last season’s champions Coventry on a sunny Wednesday afternoon. After Captain Roper had spent the warm up in a strange administrative carry on over team sheets with Marco, Conor got things underway by kicking the ball to Cov who were more than happy to go the length of the pitch on their first exit set. 6-0 down after 2 minutes and the Blues realised that the Coventry lads had taken the fact that this was a “big game” in a very literal sense.
Whilst the unnatural body shapes that formed the Coventry defensive line made attack akin to running into a brick wall, Sven Pemberton and Eduardo del Harrid have been known to charge at large pieces of masonry on a casual basis and were more than happy to oblige in doing the same with ball in hand. This gave the boys a platform to run some moves, bringing the scores level as Milnthorpe put the finishing touches on a series of shapes second only to those of Louis Claxton on his weekly Saturday night Park End.
The game carried on in this end-to-end fashion, with both teams being unable to deal with their opponent’s shape (the Blues’ shape being a series of sexually stimulating overs and unders lines, Coventry’s shape being that of early onset puberty and an allergy to leg day).
Whilst lightning continued to strike the Coventry defence down one end, down at the other some dogged defensive work from the Blues meant that the score stood at 22-18 to the hosts at half time. Unfortunately, during the ferocious defensive sets Mark Roper took a blow to the head that sent him somewhat delirious. After talking about how “the Coventry number nine used to be in the Wigan academy with me, honest”, Dr Pace concluded that (whilst full of shit) the captain had sustained nothing more than a surface injury to the nose and was able to play in the second half.
The second half carried on in similar fashion to the first, making the crowd (and a lazy match report writer) very happy. Shape continued to work for Les Blues as Maciek scored off a triple somersault backflip with pike from 10 metres out (rightfully earning him the coveted accolade of Salmon of the Day), followed up by a searing line break from Calver to put the blues 34-18 to the good early into the second half. Unfortunately, Coventry had deciphered the cryptic manoeuvres from deep in the mid palace of Mark Roper, who was too busy thinking about the time he got to meet Sam Tomkins’ half cousin to notice that he had thrown the ball to Richard Nodds just as the Coventry loose forward was preparing to eat him alive. Whilst the game was briefly interrupted for a short memorial service for a great kit boy and loving father of three, Coventry kept the physicality turned up and managed to reduce the deficit to just 4 points with 20 minutes still to play.
Thankfully for the brave boys in blue, the clock struck Quez and the Coventry defence fell for another beautiful bit of shape that put Maciek in for a try which was dutifully converted by Conor. Holding on for the last few minutes, the Blues came out on top in a 40-30 nail biter that the referee described as “the best game of league he’d seen since coming here”. Whilst we don’t know where “here” is, we do know that everyone had a nice time. Tune in next week as the blues head up the hill for a spot of bull fighting.#UTS