June 17, 2023

Match Report: Derby Elks v Sherwood Wolfhunt 17/06/2023

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Round 5

Derby Elks RL 34 Sherwood Wolfhunt RL 26

Round 5 saw Derby Elks finally play at home after travelling throughout Yorkshire for the first matches.

Deemed the Midlands Derby with both teams being based within the area but plying their trade in Yorkshire league 4C, this game has always edged towards the Nottinghamshire based team!

Brief rain showers just before the kick off did nothing to dispel the heat of the afternoon, a decent crowd of 100 plus looked forward to rugby, sunshine and drink!

The Elks were the first to be on the front foot, a dropped ball by a Sherwood player from the kick off game then the first set in the Wolfhunts half, a couple of quick plays and Captain Joe Doughty broke the line in the first minute to score, converted by Winger Ollie McMahon 6.0

This seemed to waken the Sherwood side, as they kicked and established possession in the Elks half. Some loose play saw Sherwood with the ball and managed to cross the line after 8 minutes for an unconverted try 6.4

Wolfhunt were definitely in the accendacy breaking from the half way line, only to be tackled by George Doughty and Full Back Lewis Thompson, some slowing off ball resulted in a penalty and Thompson receiving a yellow card.

From the resulting penalty Sherwood crossed the line for another unconverted try 6.8

Five minutes later Wolfhunt broke through using the slope to their benefit to score between the posts, converted. The yellow card had costed Derby 10 points with the away side 6.14 lead.

Back to a full compliment, the 22nd minute saw Hooker Doughty low push through the defence to reach for the line to score, converted by McMahon 12.14

Last ten minutes of the half was a flurry of activity with first Sherwood crossing for a converted try only to be quickly followed by Centre Alex Brown first try of the season again converted by McMahon 18.20

Most would have thought that was it for the first half however on the stroke of the half time whistle a final tackle cross field kick by Half Back Dan Wilson saw Second Row Charlie Clarke out jump his opposite number to score a great try, converted by McMahon.

Half Time Derby Elks RL 24 Sherwood Wolfhunt RL 20

Plenty of fluids taken on by all (including spectators!) and the second half started, sadly not as the home side had wanted! Within the first minute Sherwood would scored a great opportunist converted try. This edged them back in front 24.26

Just 10 minutes gone and George Doughty scored his second from an almost replica of his first half one, unconverted but pushed Elks just back in front 28.26 with almost 30 minutes remaining.

Derby defended very well but more importantly applied pressure through attacking the Sherwood line. Sherwood held on and this game could have gone either way!

Thankfully for the Elks Centre Liam Gavin lept through the Wolfhunt Winger to score a well deserved team try converted by McMahon. With just four minutes to go Derby led 34.26

Sherwood immediately attacked the Elks but sadly a loose carry gave possession to Derby who managed to contain the remainder of the game.

Full Time Derby Elks RL 34 Sherwood Wolfhunt RL 26

This was Derbys first win since July 2017 against Sherwood and this season continues to show the young Elks development going in the right direction.

The crowd had been treated this afternoon, plenty of tries, great kicks, a game of league played in great spirits and attitude from all players.

Ilkeston RUFC Chairmans man of the match going to Joshua Jackson.

Round 6 sees Derby Elks at home against Dearne Valley Bulldogs for what is expected to be another tough encounter!

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