SECOND-PLACED Chester came to Tynedale Park on Saturday boasting the best defensive record in National League Division Two North.

Just 20 minutes into the game, that record lay in tatters, as Tynedale’s leading try scorer, right winger Morgan Passman had completed a hat-trick of dazzling tries.

And with left wing Guy Pike adding two more brilliant efforts before the second half was 10 minutes old, Tynedale were in their way to their best result of the season, achieved in front of more than 850 hardy souls - the biggest crowd of the season too.

For Saturday was also the day of the annual past players’ lunch, when ex-Tynedale men came from far and wide to relive old games and create new memories.

But few former victories will have been as emphatic or as unexpected as this one, especially as Tynedale were without in-form fly half and goalkicker Rob Parker, who had jetted off to Australia to clip sheep.

The number 10 shirt went to the inexperienced Ben Hutton, a largely unknown promoted from the Raiders, who proved a revelation with a mighty siege gun boot, and some crunching tackles.

He had a shaky start from the tee, missing his first three pots at goal and failing to make the requisite 10 yards from the second half restart, but that was forgotten as he put on a polished performance of real quality.

The Tynedale pack was rock solid, hardly giving an inch and winning all their line-outs, with stand-out performances from locks Chris Wearmouth and Graeme Dunn, and back rowers Joe Richards and Ben Bell.

Skipper Matty Outson orchestrated everything with his usual sublime skills skill at scrum half, and the entire team brought a warm glow to an afternoon when the temperature failed to rise much above zero.

Chester certainly appeared to be caught cold as Tynedale had them pinned in their own 22 for the first five minutes before a long pass found Passman on the wing and he roared down the touchline to score the opener in the corner.

Hutton was short with the difficult kick, but four minutes later, he was lining up another one, as Dunn stole the ball at a Chester line out, and launched the England U18 star on the way over the line in just about the same spot for 10-0.

The second conversion attempt was closer, but short. On 20 minutes, however, Passman was over again after more slick work by Outson.

The remainder of the half belonged to Chester, as they put together some powerful attacks, but the Tynedale defence held firm superbly, as they refused to let anyone through.

It remained 15-0 at the break,but five minutes into the second half, it was the Tynedale pack’s opportunity to turn the screw, and after Wearmouth had twice gone close, and Will Miller even closer, the ball went out to Pike, who went over from close range.

Hutton’s simple conversion of the bonus point try for a 22-0 lead drew one of the biggest cheers of the afternoon.

When Chester started attacking again from the restart, Pike pulled off a great interception on halfway, and sprinted to the line to score his second, again improved by Hutton, for 29-0.

The fly half then thumped over a penalty, before Chester finally got on the scoresheet on 57 minutes through winger Craig Ross after a crossfield handling move.

There was more than a hint of a forward pass in the build up, but it made little difference to the final outcome.

Hutton set the seal on a memorable afternoon with another penalty in the 79th minute.

With three successive wins under their belts, Tynedale go to Fylde on Saturday full of confidence, after trouncing the fourth-placed Lancastrians 59-15 at Corbridge back in October.

Brian Tilley