Eagles raid Rams to claim late draw
Sheffield Eagles came back from three scores down to draw 18-18 against Dewsbury Rams at Tetley’s Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The Eagles faced an 18-4 deficit at half-time but converted tries from Anthony Thackeray and Aaron Brown, followed by a late Izaac Farrell penalty, meant the spoils were shared.
Mark Aston was able to welcome Brad Knowles and Joel Farrell back into the squad after their recent injuries.
Farrell was named as a starting second-rower while Knowles came off the bench.
Dewsbury struck first in the tie as Dom Speakman crossed from dummy-half after 11 minutes. Paul Sykes added the extras.
The next set saw the Rams extend their lead as Michael Knowles touched down after a handling error from Ryan Millar. Sykes, once again, was on target.
Things looked to be going from bad to worse for the Eagles when Izaac Farrell was sent to the sin-bin for a high tackle on 17 minutes.
However, just moments later, the Eagles got on the scoresheet through Corion as he benefitted from a Thackeray lob to the corner. James Glover, who would go off injured later in the half, missed the conversion attempt.
Dewsbury responded courtesy of ex-Eagle Knowles, who bagged his second of the game thanks to a cut-out pass from Speakman. Sykes converted and Sheffield were left with a small mountain to climb going into the second period.
Half-time - Dewsbury Rams 18-4 Sheffield Eagles
They started to scale Mount Tetley’s with the hour mark approaching as Thackeray put on a show-and-go and managed to cross the whitewash. Izaac added the extras.
The very next set saw Sheffield cut the Rams’ lead to two points as Thackeray made another break, this time passing to Brown who slid over. Izaac pinged the conversion from the touchline and it was a two point game - 18-16 to the hosts.
The Eagles haven’t been strangers to late drama in their matches and this one didn’t disappoint either. Liam Finn was penalised for being overzealous towards Joel, who decided to give a bit back. Both had a seat in the sin-bin, where they watched Izaac level matters with a penalty goal as the seconds ticked towards full-time.
Knowles of the Eagles fumbled on his own 30 metre line which handed Dewsbury one last chance to win the game. Knowles of the Rams had a drop-goal attempt charged down before Andy Gabriel was tackled as the hooter sounded.
Full-time - Dewsbury Rams 18-18 Sheffield Eagles
A hard-fought draw for the Eagles, who will now be focusing on their next trip and hoping it doesn’t involve any mountains. Swinton Lions at Heywood Road to come on Sunday.
By Dan Fowler, photo by Alex Coleman