Percy Park secure Senior Cup final spot against Morpeth
Percy Park progressed to the final of the Northumberland Senior Cup and will meet Morpeth at 1pm on Easter Saturday at McCracken Park after seeing off Tynedale in their semi-final.
Park had the luxury of keeping almost the same squad as the previous weekend with the same back line that now seems to be starting to click.
Michael Grove opened the Park account with a fourth minute penalty as Tynedale were punished for coming in at the side of a ruck.
All the early pressure came from Percy Park, although the hosts, playing at Druid Park with their own facilities still out of action due to the winter flooding at Corbridge, drew level with a penalty on 17 minutes.
Percy Park responded with a fine try from Toby Davison following a good kick return down the left hand flank. A deft pass from skipper Andy Dunn put full-back Grove into space and he then passed back inside to Davison in support. The Park wing scored under the posts and Grove slotted the conversion to give Park a 10-3 lead.
Park continued to pressure the Raiders and on the half hour mark they rumbled over for their second try with prop Mark Cook claiming the score. Grove was again on song with the conversion.
Tynedale then began to press but strong defence kept them at bay, and there being no further scores, Park went into the break 17-3 ahead.
After the interval Tyne had a penalty chance which was pulled wide of the left hand post, but they did go over for a try on the hour with the conversion bringing them back in contention at 17-10.
This was the home side’s best spell of the game, but Park continued to defend well and could have gone further ahead from the Grove boot, but he spooned his penalty attempt, a rare miss these days for the young full-back.
Moments later, however, it was Grove who showed his pace down the left wing to score Park’s third try of the game. A scrum in midfield was won by Percy Park and quick ball through the hands of the back line gave Grove space that he exploited, a dummy took him past the last defender and he was over for the try that he then converted.
With time running out for the Raiders, Park continued the pressure and a Phil Morse drop goal attempt in front of the posts was parried under the bar to give Park a five-metre scrum, from which they launched an attack which led to a try by Sam Jobson in the 82nd minute. Morse took the conversion but was off target.
Tynedale had one last flurry of activity but Park kept them out and ended the game winners 29-10.
Next week Percy Park 1st XV head off to Doncaster to take on the league leaders.