Percy Park lose Senior Cup final for second year running

Percy Park's Michael Birkett takes on the Morpeth defence.

Percy Park's Michael Birkett takes on the Morpeth defence.

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For the second consecutive year Percy Park were left disappointed after being beaten in the final of the Northumberland Senior Cup.

Last year Park lost to Northumbria University and this year they succumbed to Morpeth with the game played at McCracken Park.

There was a good Easter Saturday crowd at the home of Northern FC, and thankfully for all present the heralded storm Katie kept her distance.

A late change to the Park side saw the withdrawal of Phil Morse with a chest infection, so Paul Spowart came in fly-half. Mark Cook was back into the front row for Jonathan Kidd, Ricki Hasnip for Sam Jobson and Toby Davison for Lome Fa’atau, who dropped to the bench.

Park started well but it was Morpeth who drew first blood with a well worked try finished off by scrum-half Jack Elliot on six minutes. James Phillips converted for a 7-0 lead.

When Park were caught offside Phillips kicked the first of three penalties of the day and the red and whites moved into a 10-0 lead.

Morpeth’s aggressive line speed snuffed out most of Park’s attacks, although a good break by Michael Birkett put Percy Park on the front foot and Morpeth were forced to concede a penalty which Michael Grove converted to take the score to 10-3.

Park had the wind advantage in the first half but in the main failed to use this for territorial gain, and the half ended with Morpeth holding a seven-point advantage.

In the second half, back to back penalties by fly-half James Phillips kept the scoreboard ticking over for Morpeth as they took the game away from Park.

Percy Park brought on Fa’atau and Kay to try and add some much needed impetus, but Morpeth always looked favourites to lift the trophy, and they sealed the win with a try by left wing Ben Turner in the 71st minute.

Morpeth on the day were deserved winners.