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Match Report | Sheffield Eagles Women Red 56-8 Hull KR


By Barry Wood


The Sheffield Eagles Women Red team played Hull KR Women again for the second week running in this scheduled round 11 home fixture at the Hallam Sports Park, having defeated their opponents away 20-28 the previous Sunday.

As last week the first 10 minutes proved to be a close affair with neither side gaining ascendancy, until a Brennan offload and a drive from prop Frederick-Maynard brought play to centre-field 20m out from the Hull KR line.   In the next play prop Auger scored a remarkable try. Powering forward Auger stepped left between two defenders, then right past another, then left again wrong-footing and fending off the fullback, to dive over under the posts in the 11th minute.  Thomas converted for a 6-0 lead.

Minutes later a 45m line break from prop Frederick-Maynard took play from the Eagles 40m line to within 15m of the Hull KR line. An attempt on the right advanced another 10m, but although coming to nought it dragged most of the Hull KR defence to that side of the field. The next play shifted the ball left into the hands of loose forward Fisher who engaged in a tackle that caused the cover defence to pause.  A neat offload from in front of the posts went onwards to Parker and a back line with now almost no defence in front.  Brennan finished things off by forcing a way over on the left 11m in from the flag in the 15th minute. Thomas converted the more difficult kick to extend the lead to 12-0.

In the 18th minute a scything run on the left from fullback Judd occupied five defenders. With tacklers hanging off, Judd offloaded, but the outside support with no one in front was 3m off the pace and the pass went to ground and a certain try with it.  However redemption followed soon after when  Parker put in a superb cross field last tackle kick out right that forced a goal line dropout.  Judd took the kick reception straight up the middle to within 15m.  A nice fast wide pass from dummy half Carlton found prop Auger who promptly reprised her earlier try.  From 20m out Auger again weaved a route through the defence, fending and busting off defenders to go over 10m to the right of the posts in the 19th minute. Thomas converted for an 18-0 lead.

Another try followed shortly afterwards after Eagles coast to coast play brought offloads galore and penetration deep down the left flank.  On the next play half back Parker drifted across the defence to find second rower Exley offering a pass option.  The defence picked the wrong option and Parker drifted cleverly through to score under the posts in the 23rd minute, again converted by Thomas for 24-0.

Four minutes later another fast moving right-to-left play produced a great offload under pressure from Frederick-Maynard into the hands of Judd. Again Judd sucked in Hull KR’s edge defence and delivered a perfect pass, only to see the catch fumbled for want of technique, which left an open try line undisturbed, Hull KR recovered the loose ball, and encouraged by the let-off they upped their game and the Eagles possibly dropped off their intensity a bit.  In the 30th minute Hull KR got themselves to 5m in front of the Eagle posts.  Sweeping the ball left nearly brought a try on the edge but for a demolition tackle from Scullion and Evans. However the tacklers’ recovery to crowd the try line close to the ruck lacked the necessary double effort needed.  Hull KR’s left centre Hields only met one shoulder not two and was thus able to glance off and reach out full length to ground the ball on the line. The conversion was unsuccessful, score 24-4.

Minutes later Auger produced a 40m storming run to get within 16m of the Hull KR line, but follow up play handed the ball over on the last tackle kick.  The remaining minutes of the half saw neither side able to break through due to a combination of good defence and unforced errors.

Half-time: Sheffield Eagles Women 24 – 4 Hull KR Women

The second half began with a bang when Swann caught the kick off, advanced up to the oncoming defence to put Auger though a hole.  A 55m break then followed with Augur fending off chasers until brought down on the right 15m out and much of the Hull KR defence facing the Eagles right side attack.  Brennan received the ball and drifted left, engaging three defenders in succession before offloading to Frederick-Maynard, who swerved around the last defender to score 13m to the left of the posts in the 41st minute, converted by Thomas for 30-4.

Four minutes later another devastating run from Frederick-Maynard took play 20m up to the halfway line, putting the Hull KR defence in full retreat.  A quick play-the-ball found Auger in support which gained another 10m and an offload into the hands of dummy half Carlton.  Carlton’s sweet pass drew another defender making a 3v2 on the right and the ball into Brennan’s hands 42m out.  Confusion reigned which Brennan exploited with a sudden change of running angle heading back to the posts, scoring behind them unopposed in the 44th minute.  Thomas converted again to move the score on to 36-4.

Unforced errors by both sides in the next eight minutes disrupted play.  A ball steal by Brennan nearly produced a long range try, but Saunders joined the tackle simultaneously which caused things to be called back.  Two minutes later a loose carry surrendered the ball back into Eagles hands. On the second play Swann again drew in 2 defenders before passing out right - this time to Brennan running a line at the new hole in the staggered defence.  Needing no second invitation, Brennan firstly out-paced the nearby cover defence, then sold a show and go to the fullback before angling back to score a 59m try behind the posts in the 54th minute, unopposed yet again.  Thomas converted for 42-4.

A clever and very accurate kick from the restart out-foxed the Eagles reception, crossing into touch 11m from the halfway line.  Yet Hull KR were unable to make anything of the possession knocking on at the first play-the-ball after the handover.  From the scrum on the Eagles 40m line, Carlton shipped the ball to Brennan on the right, who in turn drew in two defenders to put Scullion away down the right flank

to within 25m of the Hull KR line.  Dummy half Carlton went short side and drew out one defender with a double pump before putting the ball round the back into the hands of Brennan, who was mysteriously lurking on the wing.  Power, strength and footwork did the rest with Brennan resisting four defenders to cross in the right corner in the 60th minute, Thomas unable to convert. Score 46-4.

Hull KR then pulled off the same brilliantly accurate kick-restart trick, again towards the Eagles left edge, the ball just bouncing inside the touchline to go out 13m from the halfway line.  This time Hull KR made a little more of the possession for a couple of sets before right winger Scullion’s copy book front-on tackle forced a spilled ball into Eagles hands, and a seven tackle set starting close to their try line. Three forceful hit-ups from the middles took play up to the 32m, then dummy half Carlton spotted thin defence on the right. Taking off from the ruck with Brennan on the right, one defender was fooled by a dummy, two more were out-paced, meanwhile Brennan had cut back inside. Carlton then intelligently swerved right to drag the fullback away, ending a 40m break by offloading out of a despairing tackle inside to the charging Brennan. Brennan in turn bamboozled a recovering defender with quick footwork to go on and cross with one last fend on the right 10m in from the flag in the 67th minute, achieving a personal five try tally.  Conversion unsuccessful, score 50-4.

Wise to the kick restart touch-finding trick, this time Exley pouched the ball brilliantly inches in front of the 40m line. Unfortunately possession did not last long with an unforced error giving the ball back to Hull KR, who made an inroad deep into Eagles territory.  A high contact penalty gave Hull KR another set starting 10m in from touch on their right and 10m out from the Eagles line.  Three plays later the ball was kept alive and switched back to the right edge to find that the Eagles left edge defence had clocked off, enabling ever dangerous right centre Banks to force a way over for a consolation try 6m in from the flag in the 75th minute. The difficult conversion was missed, score 50-8.

However the final word went to the Eagles when the kick restart was knocked-on, granting the Eagles a scrum 20m out from the posts.  One pass from the back of the scrum found Parker who cut a way through to score 9m to the right of the posts in the 79th minute, converted by Thomas for the final whistle and score of 56-4.


Full-time: Sheffield Eagles Women 56 – 8 Hull KR Women


Eagles Tries: Auger(2), Brennan(5), Frederick-Maynard, Parker(2)

Goals: Thomas (8/10)


Hull KR Tries: Hields, Banks


In conclusion an eighth successive win for the Eagles and a major confidence boost.  Still stuff to work on of course, most notably in attack on improving timing, handling and lines of running when an overload presents itself, and in defence maintaining concentration and effort to resist the occasional clocking off when the ball moves away on the opposite side of the ruck leaving the side vulnerable to play being switched back.  Nonetheless there was much to praise and many top contributions making the choosing of the players of the match awards a challenge.

However the coaches’ award had to go to Brennan in recognition of a stunning five try haul and overall quality of play.  The captain’s choice went to Lisa Parker for yet another demonstration of consistency and  incredible work rate in defence and attack, and of course two tries scored as well.