Pirates power proves too much for Roosters

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Scarborough Pirates went on the road for the third time in four weeks, this time to bottom of the league club Rotherham Roosters, and came home with a fine 40-16 victory.

From the start Pirates put pressure on the Roosters’ defence and play was only a few minutes old when big number eight Jim Thompson crashed through only to be held up over the line.

The pressure continued to mount however and following a crunching tackle by Alex Conlin the ball spilled loose and it was Thompson again who picked up and crossed for the first score.

Rotherham quickly got back on attack and the Pirates spent the next 10 minutes defending their line where some excellent work from Jack Hakings, Martin Robinson and Ali Sutton, in particular, kept the Roosters at bay.

After 20 minutes a scrum penalty against Rotherham on halfway Nick Burgess powered up to the 20, a quick tap and Hakings went over.

The Pirates now settled into contolling the match.

Firstly, centre Jack Johnson, who was a thorn in the Rotherham side all day, went over but was ruled to have made a double movement and the score was disallowed, then, after good work from winger Sean Hall, Craig Farrell crashed over, Tom Ratcliffe converted and the Pirates began to pull clear.

Two minutes later fullback Regan Stirk broke through on halfway and went straight for the sticks.

Once again the try was converted by Ratcliffe and the Pirates changed round 20-0 ahead.

Scarborough started the second half where they left off and after being awarded a penalty on the Roosters’ 20, quick hands put in Jack Johnson to touch down in the corner.

Rotherham began to get frustrated and the game was boiling over with some furious tackles going in and one of these resulted in the sin-binning of a Roosters’ forward for a high tackle on captain Dave Douthwaite.

From the resulting penalty debut forward Ben Johnson took the ball almost to the line and Robinson powered over.

The frustration continued for Rotherham and finally erupted into minor “handbags” which ends with both Douthwaite and a Rotherham forward sitting out the next 10 minutes.

The disruption doesn’t seem to affect the Pirates as Farrell blasted through two tackles to score under the posts, which Ratcliffe converted.

Coach Chris Keld re-introduced the elusive Chris Backhouse and gave a run to Jake Messruther, who both made their presence felt.

With 15 minutes to go the Pirates started easing off and this allowed Rotherham’s Mike Phillips to skip down the left wing to give the home side their first score.

The Pirates responded quickly, winger Tom Jenkinson taking the ball from the kick-off and was hauled down 10 metres short, after some quick play Farrell completed his hat-trick, once again converted by Ratcliffe.

With only a few minutes to go Rotherham gained some consolation in the form of two quick tries by Danny Cribbis and Ryan Boskill, but it was the Pirates who had the last word as Sean Outhart took the ball to the line and it was released for Ben Johnson to score on his debut.

The Pirates man of the match was captain Douthwaite.

Team: R Stirk, T Jenkinson, J Johnson, S Hall, M Robinson, C Farrell, T Ratcliffe, J Thompson, C Backhouse, A Conlin, A Sutton, D Douthwaite, J Hakings, B Johnson, S Outhart, J Dunn, N Burgess, L Outhart, J Messruther.