Last-gasp penalty by Johnson seals York RUFC glory

BATTLING York RUFC should have won this Yorkshire One game comfortably, but after squandering a number of chances at Old Brodlieans they had to go to the wire before winning 18-17.

York started brightly. They controlled the ball from the kick off driving up the pitch through the forwards assisted by a couple of early infringements around the breakdown by the retreating Brods defence.

But Brods took the lead when Chris Fox was outpaced and Joe Kirker missed his tackle for left-wing Carter to go under the posts. The try was converted.

York carried threat when they got the ball wide but all too often sought contact in midfield, a game plan that the Brods defence comfortably coped with.

From such an encounter outside centre Hartley splintered the York defence and, after carrying the ball 30 yards, released Briggs to go under the posts. Again the kick tagged on the extras.

Shortly after Joe Maud replaced hamstring victim Lewis Hannibal York crossed.

Andy Kay manfully collected a scrappy ball to feed Billy Cakaunitabua on the left. A strong run and equally powerful hand off took him to the last defender before he sent Maud in to score for a 14-5 half-time deficit.

Ben Johnson gathered a ball and eased in Mark Bradshaw. Though he was brought down, from the ruck Steve Kerr crashed over to cut the deficit to four points.

Injuries took out Kay and Kerr, the latter taking a headshot. That forced a reshuffle in which Aaron Thompson came on as open-side wing forward and Maud reverted to number 8.

As the visitors settled Brods broke to gain a penalty which was kicked to lead 17-10.

But Maud got the ball at the rear of the driving maul and crossed. While the conversion was missed York got another chance when the hosts were penalised in front of their own posts on the 22-metre line for offside at the ruck.

Johnson obliged and a hard-earned victory was sealed.

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