TYNEDALE Centurions tasted defeat against a Morpeth Stags side emboldened by their powerful pack.

Facing a strong wind, Tynedale went behind in the fourth minute, when the Morpeth forwards, showing great technique and experience, drove them back over the try line following a line-out 10 metres out.

The score gave Tynedale a wake-up call, and after great work from several players, Adam Binks sped over to draw Tynedale level just five minutes later.

Morpeth’s pack scored again following a line-out from a penalty kicked into touch on the 22. They then edged forward and scored from another maul in similar fashion to their opening score.

On 25 minutes, following a good handling movement in the difficult conditions, the Morpeth centre scored close to the posts, despite a valiant defensive effort by debutant Joe Matthews, to make the successful conversion relatively easy.

Tynedale responded with a good passage of play but, despite several players making good contributions to the game, it was Morpeth who added a penalty kick before half time to lead 20-5.

After the break, Tynedale introduced Rory Craney and Ian Charlton to the proceedings. Rory Dixon was kicking to great effect with the wind at his back, and Tynedale were able to play long periods in the Morpeth half.

On 48 minutes, the Centurions reduced the Morpeth lead when Dixon scored following good play by Jason Armstrong and George Hendry.

However, Morpeth kept the pressure on the Tynedale line from the restart, and were eventually awarded a penalty which was struck well to give them a two score advantage.

From the restart, a strong break by the Centurions’ Ollie Shrimpton and powerful scrummaging from young Ed Weir with Harry Renwick offering support allowed Rob Earnshaw to cross for the third Tynedale try.

Despite closing the gap, the strong Morpeth side were able to close off the game in the Tynedale half to gain a hard earned victory in an entertaining contest in difficult conditions.