Harrogate hunt Yorkshire pride at home to Hull

hsb �Harrogate v Westoe. � �(111217M4a)
hsb �Harrogate v Westoe. � �(111217M4a)

THEIR seconds obliterated Hull last weekend and Harrogate first team manager Graham Siswick hopes that will hold the first team in good stead tomorrow when Hull arrive at Claro Road (2pm ko).

The rearranged fixture is another important one on Harrogate’s road to National Two North safety.

Mike Aspinall’s side come into the contest eyeing their third win on the trot.

Saturday’s nail-biting 15-14 win at Stockport, followed a previous away victory at Nuneaton, and was thanks to a late Ryan Peacey try.

Now Siswick is calling on his players to pick up their first positive result at home since their 22-13 victory against Kendal in December.

“The 2nds beat Hull 2nds 79-10 on Saturday, hopefully that will be a good omen for us,” said Siswick.

“It is going to be a tough game, Hull are one of the most financially well-backed clubs in the division and have a lot of ex-Premiership experience.”

Tomorrow’s encounter will be like friends reunited, with a host of former Claro Roaders due to make the trip west.

Player-coach Dan Cook and his brother Oliver, hooker Scott Plevey, second row Max Lewis and winger Will Robinson will all travel.

With on-loan South African schoolboy international Byron Godfrey from Rotherham and ex-Leeds scrum half Dan White also in their ranks, Siswick knows ’Gate have their work cut out.

“It is going to be a really tough test,” he added.

“But if we play anything like we have over the last two weeks, then we are more than capable of picking up the points.”

Utility back Aspinall is unavailable tomorrow.

Captain Ed Smithies is back after a week’s absence and Callum Irvine is also in the squad after returning from Scottish Exile action.

On Saturday the match started with waves of Harrogate attacks and a powerful Nick Beaumont drive led to Stockport conceding a penalty just short of the try line.

A straightforward three points were on offer but Aspinall caught the defence napping with a quick tap and dived over to score. Stockport then went offside and an Aspinall penalty put ‘Gate 0-10 ahead.

Dan Eccles pulled the home side back in it with a try. An excellent Josh Longmore conversion followed and Stockport mounted repeated attacks for the rest of the half.

The same pattern followed from the resumption and Tom Cruse, Stockport’s top gun hooker, burst through the ‘Gate defence in a powerful 30 metre break. Fortunately for Harrogate, he was tackled just short of the line.

Still more home pressure followed but a great Sam Brady turnover denied them a seemingly certain try.

The pressure had to tell but, ironically, Stockport’s next try came from Harrogate driving a home scrum backwards. The referee spotted something illegal and Stockport opted for a five metre scrum from the penalty.

This time their pack took control and replacement No8 Jordan Pearson scored from the drive to give Longmore a straightforward conversion.

Stockport were still largely dominating and Harrogate repeatedly missed touch from a host of relieving penalty kicks.

As the whistle loomed, Harrogate won a five-metre scrum.

A free kick was awarded for a Stockport offence, replacement Peacey took the kick and then squirmed through for the try.

Aspinall missed the conversion but ’Gate hung on to win.