Archive | December, 2013


31 Dec




Following stand out performances at Driffield last Saturday, ex-Rugby League star Craig Farrell and youngster Joe Lenton are included in Scarborough’s side for the visit of Heath to Silver Royd on Saturday. Lenton will make his league debut in this game whilst Farrell teams up with Kiwi  Benji Cottle in the centre. Fit again skipper Phil Watson is on the bench. Team selections at 



31 Dec




Driffield 21  Scarborough 24


By Dave Campbell


Scarborough travelled to North One outfit Driffield for a Christmas friendly fixture and blew away the festive cobwebs with a well-deserved 24-21 victory in a hugely entertaining game at Kelleythorpe. 

Both clubs fielded sides with a fair smattering of first team regulars augmented by some promising youngsters and Scarborough made the early running in perfect conditions for rugby. However, having spent the opening five minutes in their own 22, the Woldsmen broke upfield and from a ruck deep in Scarborough territory, flanker Rob Hamilton made a half break and sent scrum-half Harvey Harding in for the opening score of the game. Fly-half Rob Murray added the extras for 7-0. 

The Seasiders struggled in the early set scrums but when Driffield re-shuffled their front row, parity in this area of the game was restored. Driffield looked to have real pace when they broke particularly wing Robin McGill; however Scarborough’s defence was up to the task particularly hard running centres Billy Parker and ex Rugby League star Craig Farrell. Debutante right wing Joe Lenton put in a couple of great tackles in the opening quarter and acquitted himself well. Tom Ratcliffe, playing at fly-half pinned the home side back in their own territory with a fine display of line kicking.

Harding who was yellow carded in the last meeting between the clubs back in April was given another ten minutes to cool his heels in the 18th minute and Scarborough took advantage when Farrell who was on fire, surged through the middle to release Parker who powered over in the 20th minute. Ratcliffe converted to level the scores at 7-7. The Woldsmen struggled to cope with the ‘punch’ of Farrell and Parker who took play to the home five metre line in the 25th minute. From the attacking scrum the ball was moved right for Ratcliffe to send fullback Graeme Jeffrey, up in support, over for the visitor’s second touch-down.  Ratcliffe failed to convert but Scarborough led 12-7. 

The entertainment continued in a hard-fought second quarter and Driffield grabbed the lead back in the 32nd minute when following a series of drives to the visitor’s line, back row James Dinsdale drive over; Murray converted to nudge his side 14-12 ahead. The seesaw nature of the game continued with Ratcliffe and scrum-half Jake Rollinson taking the game to the home side with Farrell and Parker punching holes through the middle and No8 Nick Ingham in the thick of things. And the Seasiders got their reward with the last play of the half when, following a series of attacking scrums, the Driffield eight infringed as a push-over was about to be scored and the referee awarded a penalty try which Ratcliffe converted for a 19-14 Scarborough lead at halftime. 

Driffield made a lively start to the second half and it took them just five minutes to snatch the lead back when a break from fly-half Murray sent McGill off on a searing run down the right touchline. The flying wingman left Jeffrey on his backside with a couple of sinewy sidesteps before cutting into to score between the uprights. Murray finished off what he’d started, and converted for a 21-19 lead.

Scarborough tightened their grip on the game following that reverse and dominated the forward exchanges with solid, organized defence and some shuddering tackles which pinned the Woldsmen in their own half. Tom Harrison came on for Ratcliffe, who was substituted as a precaution but the visitors continued to press and it was no surprise when following good work by the midfield, Billy Parker powered over in the 58th minute for a 24-21 lead. Man-of-the-match Craig Farrell failed to convert. 

The final quarter of the game was scoreless but not for the want of trying by a Scarborough side which dominated possession and territory and Driffield who looked dangerous on the break. 

SCARBOROUGH (squad) Jeffrey Lenton Parker Farrell Lucas Rollinson Ratcliffe Fish Williams Taylor Oxtoby Hoggard Day Sutton Ingham Hill Harrison




Phil Stewart”s full report on Scarborough’s win at Acklam

20 Dec





You could forgive Scarborough fans for being slightly apprehensive of travelling to bottom club Acklam on the back of three successive defeats in the league. As it turned out, the visitors eased to a comfortable bonus point win, avoiding a potential banana skin and possibly kick-starting their season back into gear.

Scarborough made several changes to the team that played at York last week. Undoubtedly the biggest team news came in the form of the returning Corey Dennis, Scarborough’s player of the year last season.  Matthew Oxtoby returned from holiday to take his place on the bench and a late change brought Tom Ratcliffe into the side for Matty Young who dropped to the 2nd team. This proved to be a master stroke from coach Lee Douglas, as Ratcliffe put in one of his finest performances in a Scarborough shirt.

Scarborough started the match with a strong wind behind them, and blew the host side away in the first 20 minutes of the game. It took little over 3 minutes for Scarborough’s class with the ball in hand to show. A poor scrum from the visitors in their own half left Jake Rollinson with his only option to ship the ball to a stationary Tom Ratcliffe. The winger made the best of a bad situation, slipping through a couple of poor Acklam tackles to break clear. He was finally dragged down metres from the line, but offloaded to a supporting Graeme Jeffery who dived into the corner for a try. Ratcliffe converted from the touchline for 7-0.

Shortly after this it became apparent that in-form Scarborough fly-half, Tom Harrison, was struggling with a leg injury, choosing his left foot to kick for touch as Acklam put him under pressure. However, when Scarborough ventured up to the Acklam 22 just after the 10 minute mark, he put his troubles behind him. Receiving the ball from a well worked lineout Harrison stepped across the home defence and threw an inside pass where Ratcliffe was waiting. Hitting the line at speed, he coasted straight through a gap and under the posts for his first try, he converted the extras to take the score to 14-0.

A couple of minutes later the burly winger was converting another try of his own making. After Scarborough had exerted considerable pressure, Acklam had managed to clear their lines into touch. Fast thinking from Jan Tieber allowed Scarborough to take the lineout quickly and the ball was moved through the Scarborough hands. When Ratcliffe received the ball he dummied outside and went straight through an Acklam defence that was becoming nothing short of lacklustre. He scored under the posts, and the following conversion turned out to be his final one of the afternoon.

Credit must be given to Acklam for sticking to their task, despite Scarborough taking advantage of the wind to dominate both territory and possession early on. The home side received a reward for their endeavour on 20 minutes when they scored a try in the corner from winger Andrew Dunn. The Scarborough defence had looked comfortable repelling numerous Acklam phases in their own 22. However, poor defending out wide led to an overlap and when Acklam moved the ball wide, not even the last ditch cover tackle of Corey Dennis could stop Dunn scoring. The conversion was kicked wide and the score remained at 21-5.

The remainder of the half was a very scrappy affair. Scarborough looked to assert dominance up front but Acklam could not be faulted in their commitment to the tackle. Above all, the conditions dominated and both teams’ play was littered with handling errors and penalty infringements. Scarborough had the better of the territory but looked panicky and indecisive at key moments, where Acklam had one clear break away but a committed covering tackle from Jake Rollinson put an end to any hope of another try. At half-time the score was still 21-5.

Undoubtedly the shining light of the first half had been the Scarborough backline, who at times had looked a class above their Acklam counterparts. The second half started in a similar vein although this time it was the bulldozing Billy Parker punching holes in the Acklam defence, with Dennis and Ratcliffe always looking threatening. Scarborough had a great chance early in the second half when a strong run from Ratcliffe beat several defenders, the ball was moved inside to Harrison who had his pass slapped down with the line begging and the chance was gone.

Having failed to secure a bonus point so many times this season, when the clocked ticked to 60 minutes, it may have been in the back of Lee Douglas’ mind that a fourth try would never come. Luckily Tom Harrison was not in the mood to let that happen. Brilliant quick thinking and a change of direction in the play from the fly-half left Acklam outnumbered on the short side in their own half. The ball was moved through the hands for Ratcliffe who cruised over to seal his hat-trick. Into the wind any conversion in this half for the winger was doubtful and he was unable to add to his 21 point haul.

The final quarter of the game saw the Scarborough pack come to life. Aggressive running from Nino Cutino and Chris Purdy, with Nick Ingham constantly offering himself to take the ball on, decimated a tiring Acklam pack. Cutino received his reward for his tireless effort when Scarborough were awarded a penalty close to the home line. Harrison took a quick tap and popped the ball to the monstrous prop who smashed through the home defence to get the ball down. After a missed conversion the score was 31-5.

Acklam continued to show fight, but the Scarborough pack was now showing superiority in both the scrum and the loose. On a very windy, difficult day for hooker Ian Williams the Scarborough lineout looked strong and it was Cutino who was the beneficiary of this. He scored two tries coming from driving lineouts to give him a hat-trick in only his second match back after injury. Both were carbon copies of each other, with a perfect throw from Williams hitting his mark, and a powerful drive from the Scarborough pack sending ‘The Lion’ over.

Acklam came back at Scarborough for the last few minutes, desperately searching for a consolation point and pinning the visitors back on their line. It was not to be however, and Scarborough kicked the ball from play, leaving the field victorious at 41-5.





Scarborough too good for struggling Acklam.

15 Dec

I was unable to make it to Acklam yesterday due to family commitments but see from that Scarborough won 41-5. Full report from Phil Stewart later in the SCARBOROUGH NEWS.

Dave Campbell’s online column FROM THE TOUCHLINE – Can the Seasiders stop the rot?

12 Dec




Last Saturday Scarborough played some great stuff in the first half of their derby clash with York at Clifton Park and led 17-5 at the break thanks to tries from Tom Ratcliff and Mikey Readman with flyhalf Tom Harrison converting both and adding a penalty. The sin-binning of talismanic centre Benji Cottle just a few minutes into the second half brought about a reversal in fortunes with the Minster-men coming back into the game scoring a couple of tries in his absence and going on to win 27-22. Coach Lee Douglas and his players have to quickly find the solution to their second half disappearance in a third of their games which has seen them slip from second to seventh in Yorkshire One in a few weeks. I have spoken to several players during the week and in the main they are at odds themselves as to what happens in these games. I personally think that mental toughness is the answer; composure, confidence and decision making under pressure being the key. Their commitment and effort is not in question, every man jack of them was exhausted at the end of the game at York. Tomorrow they travel to bottom club Acklam for their final game before the Christmas/New Year break. Their Middlesbrough-based opponents have yet to win a league game and were on the wrong end of a 52-0 scoreline at Silver Royd in the first home game of the season. However since then they have improved at home; if not in results but in performance and have run several visiting sides close, notably the 33-26 defeat by North Ribblesdale and the game with Bridlington in which they led going into the last ten minutes of the game before going down 26-16 to the men from Dukes Park. So Saturday’s game is a potential massive banana skin but talking to the players this week and reading skipper Tom Harrison’s comments in today’s Scarborough News it’s pretty obvious there will no complacency on Saturday and minds will hopefully be focused for the full eighty minutes of the game.

Corey Dennis who has been studying in Singapore is home on holiday and has trained twice this week. He has been picked at fullback for Saturday’s game with Graeme Jeffrey moving to the wing. Last week’s man-of-the-match Zybnec Schutz injured a shoulder and will miss the game; Jake Rollinson deputizes. Up front Nino Cutino starts in the front row with Ian Williams and Paul Taylor whilst Matthew Else and Blake Nightingale return in the back row. Tom Ratcliffe, Ryan Pickering and Matty Oxtoby are on the bench. In other senior rugby, The Vikings are in action at Acklam and the Gulls take on Harrogate Veterans in the Pete Emms Memorial game at Silver Royd; all kick-offs at 2.15pm.

Pick of Saturday’s Yorkshire One fixtures will be the top of the table clash between second-placed Ilkley and third-placed Wath; leaders Doncaster Phoenix are at Selby. Elsewhere Heath, Brods and Pontefract host Keighley, North Ribblesdale and  Dinnington  respectively. Bridlington are at York. Locally, Malton entertain Alnwick in North One East.

A feast of junior rugby at Silver Royd on Sunday will see Scarborough under 14s playing Keighley (kick-off to be announced), the under 15s taking on Middlesbrough at 11am and the under 16s hosting Middlesbrough at 1230 in the 3rd round of the Yorkshire cup.  The Minis take on Driffield from under 6 to under 11 levels. The under 17s are at Thirsk in the Yorkshire League.



Deja-vu at York – Scarborough squander 17-5 halftime lead at Clifton Park

8 Dec




Scarborough led 17-5 at half-time in the North Yorkshire derby at Clifton Park thanks to tries from Tom Ratcliffe and Mikey Readman and seven points from the boot of Tom Harrison. Leading try scorer Benji Cottle was sin-binned early in a second half where the Seasiders leaked three tries and slid to a 27-22 defeat.  Cottle scored a late try for the visitors

Dave Campbell’s online column FROM THE TOUCHLINE – Nino returns for York

6 Dec




Scarborough have had a curates egg of a season and having started off with a five game undefeated run, have lost on their last two outings. Two weeks ago they slid to a 15-10 defeat at relegation threatened Pontefract with their poorest display of the season and last week suffered their first home defeat at the hands of title-chasing Wath. These two defeats came off the back of the 26-23 victory over league-leaders at the time Doncaster Phoenix; unpredictable or what!  And things don’t get any easier tomorrow as the Seasiders travel down the A64 to Clifton Park to take to take on similarly unpredictable York who sit one point above them in Yorkshire One. The Minster-men have had a similar sort of season so far, starting off with four straight wins including the 88-7 demolition of Acklam on the opening day. Since then they have lost to all three top of the table clubs Doncaster Phoenix, Ilkley and Wath. However last week they travelled to Pontefract and thrashed the west Yorkshiremen 39-0 collecting a bonus point along the way. Considering that Scarborough could manage a win a Ponte the previous week, things long ominous for Coach Lee Douglas’ men. I can’t remember the last time Scarborough won at Clifton Park but the way results have gone this season, I wouldn’t be altogether surprised if they came away with a win tomorrow.

Surprise news coming from Silver Royd is that talismanic South African prop Nino Cutino returns to action tomorrow. I had understood he wouldn’t return to action until the New Year when he returns from a holiday back in Cape Town. I just hope they’re not rushing him back too soon. The only other personnel change to last week’s squad is the inclusion of Rob Sutton for the injured Charlie Hoggard. Nick Ingham and Mikey Readman start in the second row. In the fixture last season York were 27-13 winners of a lively game. A Tom Ratcliffe try saw Scarborough lead 10-5 in the first half but York came back strongly to grab the points. Nino Cutino was man of the match. Elsewhere in Yorkshire One tomorrow neighbours Bridlington who lost 50-14 at Selby last week entertain a resurgent Old Brodlieans side who only scraped a 19-13 home win over winless Acklam last Saturday. And could Acklam manage their first win of the season when they entertain fellow strugglers Pontefract? You can keep up with the progress of games in Yorkshire One at and Scarborough score updates on the Scarborough News Sport Twitter feed @SN_Sport.

Before last week’s game I saw Nino Cutino having a chat with referee Graeme Hall and jokingly said that it wasn’t often I saw Nino chatting to a referee who wasn’t brandishing a card. Mr Hall replied that he was trying to persuade Nino to try refereeing as it was a far less risky proposition than playing, referring to his thumb injury. However half an hour later the official was on his backside on the Silver Royd paddock having tripped over a Wath player who was on the ground and was receiving the ministrations of two physios. I don’t think he persuaded Nino but the plucky whistler shook of an injury which looked as if it may have caused the game to be abandoned and continued with the game. Well done Mr Hall!

Other senior rugby at the club tomorrow sees the Vikings entertain York at Silver Royd; the Scarborough second string includes the powerful centre pairing of Billy Parker and ex-super league ace Craig Farrell; could the super-fit Graham School teacher be planning another Yorkshire One rugby union comeback!  The Danesmen are also in action; they travel to York to take on York 3rds. The travelling teams meet at Silver Royd at 11am and all games kick-off at 2.15pm.






Great action pictures by ANDY STANDING from yesterday’s Scarborough-Wath clash

1 Dec

Yesterday’s 16-8 defeat by Wath at Silver Royd was very disappointing but Andy Standing, who is finding his feet covering rugby, produced some great pictures. See below:
















Scarborough slide to third defeat of the season AND lose unbeaten home record

1 Dec

In an improved performance from last week, Scarborough led 8-3 at half time thanks to an early Tom Harrison Penalty and a Blake Nightingale try in their league clash with Wath at Silver Royd. However, another poor second forty minutes saw the Seasiders concede two tries and a penalty and run out of ideas, conceding their first home defeat of the season. Full report on-line in tomorrow’s web version of the SCARBOROUGH NEWS.

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