All Blacks grind out an impressive win at leaders

Colne and Nelson celebrate victory at Southport
Colne and Nelson celebrate victory at Southport
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Colne and Nelson ground out a terrific 36-29 win at top of the table Southport on Saturday.

Southport quickly opened up and showed why they had put 90 points past Fleetwood in their opening game.

With the base set, the nine set the backs loose, and the ball was put through the hands at pace, ending up in the 15’s hands.

Without a cover tackle from Tom Davies and Andy Bullock, Colne could have quite easily been down two tries in the opening 10 minutes.

Southport soon broke the deadlock as Colne struggled with the pace of the young back line, conversion good.

Southport continued to utilise the back line at every opportunity.

With Colne camped on their 22 for a period of time, it wasn’t long before the defence was again broken with a Southport try on the 15-minute mark.

Colne began to rally, with the forwards now working their way around the fringe defence and gaining some hard yards, Matt Tindall took the option to kick territory.

The lineouts worked well, with Adam Padgett calling the shots and James Finucane and Ant Minshull jumping well,

Colne finally started to gain a foothold in the game, only for some stray passes from the new backline thwarting the attacks.

As the Southport defence rushed to meet the oncoming Colne attack on the half way line, Tindall produced a stroke of magic as he chipped over, gathered his own chip and ran to dot the ball under the posts.

Colne played the final 10 minutes of the first half with 14 men, as a cover tackle from Tindall was then rucked over by James Finucane.

The referee deemed a ruck to have formed, and with Finucane entering from the side, the man in the middle sent the Colne number eight for 10 minutes on the sideline.

The resulting penalty was superbly defended by Colne.

Southport took a quick tap, but with Brad Collins and Alex Wood quick to face up to the attack, the ball was knocked forward by the Southport attacker.

The final five minutes of the half was very much a 50/50 affair. Colne did well to stem the Southport attacks, but made hard yards when the Colne forwards hit the spaces.

The second half started with some intent from Colne.

Determined not to let the home side dictate the pace, Colne upped the gears.

Kyle Hargreaves and Jamie Gane soon started to gel, with both half backs putting the All Blacks on the front foot.

Connor Kinnane carried hard with support from Ersnt Tino and Andy Bullock.

With Tino starting to cause problems on the wing, Gane looped Kinnane and fed Tino, who shrugged off the tackle to score and level at 14-14.

Colne were caught napping for the next 10 minutes, as Southport pressed up.

A quick tap penalty allowed their winger to score in the corner, followed by a penalty.

The home side crossed the whitewash again with 15 minutes to play, extending their lead to 29-14.

Colne responded, and good carries from Zack Bullock, Finucane and Adam Padgett set Colne on the attack.

Kyle Hargreaves fed Jamie Gane, and quick hands through Tindall and Kinnane fed Adam Hartley to cross the 22.

The covering defenders managed to tackle Hartley, but an exquisite offload to Tino put the winger over for his second.

Big second row Brad Collins was next on the score sheet to bring the scores level for Colne.

A series of scrums for Colne on the Southport five metre should have yielded some points, but a change in the Southport front row stemmed the Colne onslaught.

A quick tap penalty after the referee had produced a yellow for the home side’s number nine, saw Collins bundled his way through a couple of defenders and dot the ball down. The converstion by Tindall put Colne level.

In the final minute of the game, Colne pushed for a winner.

Working their way up the field, it was left to Hargreaves and his trusty skipper Padgett to execute their favourite move for Colne to go ahead, conversion good.

Colne and Nelson host Fleetwood seconds in the Halbro North West Leagues Division 2 North tomorrow, kick-off 3 p.m.

Colne seconds were beaten 54-10 at home to a well-drilled Garstang, while the women’s team went down to Windermeres.

On Sunday, the Colts won 20-0 at Bury.