Trafford MV went into the Lancashire Trophy Final against Widnes, played at Rochdale RFC in good conditions with a stiff breeze, as firm underdogs against a strong side that had already won the ADM Lancs Premier League and League Cup this season. However hopes and spirits were high as MV fielded a strong team in their search for silverware.
MV had good support to spur them on and indeed started the game very well keeping Widnes under heavy pressure for the opening quarter and with a 0-0 scoreline it looked like being a tight affair. MV possession was good and field position was in MV's favour as Widnes defended strongly.
Close calls came as Pat Eccles missed a drop goal and a penalty and both James Matthie and Jamie Kingdon had good runs and attempts at scoring denied by last ditch defence.
A change in the game was signalled when Jamie Patient put in a good tackle and turnover in midfield for Widnes which resulted in a try for Josh Kenyon converted by Kevin Leadbetter from the touchline 0-7.
Trafford MV responded immediately as the restart was taken and driven down field by Andy Quigley which brought a penalty which Pat Eccles converted. MV kept the pressure on and forced a further penalty from Eccles to reduce the deficit 6-7.
Both sides were playing well and it was Widnes that showed their potential fist when from broken play some good support and running saw Leadbetter launch a well timed pass which put Gavin Hatton away stepping inside the cover defence. Leadbetter converted 6-14.
As the half hour came Widnes created havoc on the MV defence and good play saw Josh Paton dive over in the corner, unconverted, 6-19.
MV kept in contention as MV worked ball from a lineout which saw Jamie Kingdon hit a good angle to split the Widnes defence and score under the posts. Wines also lost a man to a yellow card during this play and with Eccles converting there was a good competitive half time score of 13-19 to Widnes.
With a man down Widnes managed to hold on, missing a penalty, but holding position deep in the MV half. However MV were hit with the same penalty as Lewis Kingdon was carded for a late challenge. This swung the game dramatically as Widnes took full advantage of the extra man. Three tries were conceded in quick succession as Leadbetter kicked a penalty and then Jamie Patient, Gavin Hatton and finally Aaron Duggan to take the score to an emphatic 13-41 in a short period of time.
It is not in MV's nature to lie down without a fight and they came back at Widnes with a second try for Jamie Kingdon 18-41. James Matthie crossed the line after a great run but a last ditch tackle knocked the ball from his grip over the line.
Owen Nottley crashed over from close range after some good forward play, Eccles converted 25-41 and MV had Widnes ruffled. It was finally James Matthie that closed off MV's scoring as he crossed the line following a good performance from him and the whole MV team. With a final score of 30-41 MV were disappointed but not despondent. Captain Andy Quigley and Coach Ricky Phillips both expressed their pride and encouragement taken from this game. MV showed their true potential and can go into the Summer break with high hoped for next season. MV also thank their sponsors and supporters for their backing in the final and throughout the season.
Updated 13:38 - 14 May 2019 by Wilf Dooley