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Captain - Tony Windo Manchester v Worcester 11 Oct
Crowd: 630 Kick-Off: 15:00
Weather: Greyish But Dry Referee: Mr Wigglesworth
Ground: Good Condition Half-Time Score: 29 : 0
Wind: Nil Full-Time Score: 56 : 3
Food: Not The Usual Man O Match: Drew Hickey
Beer: IPA (Ugh) Scores: 9 Tries, 4 Con, 1 Pen
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Rate = Rating, Try = Tries, Pen = Penalties, Con = Conversions, DG = Drop Goal
Rate Try Pen Con DG Rate Try Pen Con DG Rate Try Pen Con DG
Duncan Roke 7 1 . . . Tony Windo 7 . . . . Jon Hylton 6 . . . .
Darren O'Leary 8 2 . . . Ben Daly 8 . . . . Duncan Murray 7 1 . . .
Tommy Hayes 8 . . 4 . Lee Fortey 7 . . . . Rhodri McAtee 6 . . . .
Gary Trueman 8 1 . . . Dan Zaltsman 7 . . . . Tom Warren 6 . . . .
Wes Davies 8 2 . . . Craig Gillies 7 . . . . Iyran Clunis 7 . . . .
James Brown 9 1 1 . . Mark Gabey 8 . . . . Neil Mason 7 . . . .
Mat Powell 8 . . . . Gavin Pfister 8 2 . . . Matt Evans 8 . . . .
. . . . . . Drew Hickey 9 . . . . . . . . . .
2nd Half   2nd half
RWC had started, France v SA were about to play their first game, however the Warriors support was out in full at Grove park Manchester. A great turnout constituting well over 60% of the crowd.

We had  the kick-off and before you could say Rumplestilskin Wes Davies was in at the canter. It was cynical rugby, a cutting edge we had been waiting to see. Andy  was interested to see how they would start after a 2 hour drive up the motorway. Well Andy I think they answered that quite nicely. A great start that set the scene for the rest of the game

From the kick-off Worcester were in total control of the game. The power and speed of the forwards was providing great ball for the in-form James Brown to distribute at will.  Gary Trueman was creating havoc in the Manchester defence, finally bursting through on the left to score another delightful try.

Manchester 0 : 12 Worcester

On 15 minutes The Warriors were awarded yet another penalty at the ruck.

Mr Wigglesworth was certainly making amends for the soft approach to the ruck and maul up at Otley in the first game of the season.

Tommy put the ball out for a 5m Line

The Worcester 8 strode purposefully towards the Manchester line in full expectation to take the ball and create yet another catch and drive.

Ben Daly put in a ball to the middle of the line and up soared Craig Gillies. As his feet touched terra firma in came his fellow forwards and on cam the power. Manchester tried hard to stop the score, but there is no stopping this pack, driving forward, twisting, rolling the whole 8 drove over the line for the man of the season, Gavin Pfister, to go over and score his first try of the day.

Every game so far we have scored at least one catch and drive try!!

Manchester 0 : 17 Worcester

Once again, with the control exerted by theses magnificent pack of forwards James Brown was having the freedom and time to control the game. Releasing his ever willing forwards and the electric Gary Trueman. Gary has started the season in brilliant form, more powerful and faster than last season he has caused mayhem in the defence of every team we have played. Outside him we have the powerful gilt edged Tommy Hayes who's strength, speed and quickness of though have provided the foil for the speedster on the outside, Wes Davies, Daren O'Leary and Duncan Roke

We were being thrilled by some of the best handling, running and support play seen this season so far. Yes we had a few spilled balls and against better opposition we "may" have been punished, but to have the confidence to move the ball at such electric speed is testament to the underlying skill in this team.

The backrow of Pfister, Gabey and Hickey were utterly dominant. Gabey's powerful drives carrying the ball deep into the Manchester defence, Gavin's sniffing, snapping, tackling was cleaning up everything around him and Drew's ability to be deep in a ruck and then appear in the middle of the backs to release the wingers was phenomenal. He has definitely come to the party now!

Very little is mentioned of the front 5 maybe because they are so dominant, but the return of Dan Zaltsman has added power and energy around the recycled phase ball. . The front row are now a very powerful and mobile unit which can "Stop All Invaders".

In essence this really was a miss-match of skills. Worcester were in total control of the game. There were some good breaks from the Manchester flyhalf but without the support he was never going to outrun Worcester defence. Duncan Roke put in three magnificent try saving  tackles, hitting the player hard and putting man and ball hard onto the ground for that Tasmanian Devil Gavin Pfister to come in rip the ball away and immediately set up another counter attack

Two real stars of the day to your left in Ben Daly and Daren O'Leary.

Ben has shown all season his strength and skill around the field he continued in that vein the whole game. Now Daren has received some unfavourable press, but last week saw him really start to come into his own. Today saw the "Real" Daren, his entry into the line and body movement was right out of the top draw.

It was this try that reopened the door for the Warriors. Manchester had defended well and kept out the free running backs for at least 20 minutes. Look at the joy and that little cherubic face!

Manchester 0 : Worcester 24

The game once again now took on the picture of a free try scoring spree! All the Worcester  players were involved in supporting each other and providing the ball at the right time for their team mates to break through the defence making massive yardage at every opportunity. It was only spilt ball or over enthusiasm that enabled Manchester to keep them out.

Drew Hickey, Matt Powell and James Brown were working magnificently together ,as if they had been playing for years together

Powell, Brown, Trueman, Hayes and Hickey combined for what must have been the best move of the day. The running was sublime and silky smooth intermingled with some sleight of hand that would have dazzled David Blaine, in particular one pass from Gary to Tommy Hayes left the crowd in bewilderment and the Manchester defence in tatters, magical stuff, well worth the drive to Manchester alone

The half however was not yet over. There was still time for the forwards to once again put on the power form another lineout and drive over another try. Who scored, one guess.

The ferret Gavin Pfister

Manchester 3 : 29 Worcester

Look at Drew Hickey's face he really was up for this game in a big way, he was everywhere. His tackling and stealing of the ball in the tackle turned many balls over. His linking in the midfield, in the loose and on the deep outside gave Worcester yet another attacking tool they have never had before.

This team will just get better game by game!

2nd Half 2003-2004 Match Reports Index 2nd Half