Rochdale Hornets 56 - 12 Workington

Date published: 24 May 2024

Rochdale Hornets convincingly made it back-to-back League One victories as they saw off Workington Town in the tropical Rochdale sunshine at the Crown Oil Arena on Sunday 19 May.

Head Coach Gary Thornton made three changes to the side that beat Cornwall last time out, with on-loan Oliver Brookes, Jack Derbyshire, on dual registration from Leigh Leopards and Lameck Juma all recalled to the starting thirteen.

Hornets came out the blocks on a scorching hot day on fire, Jack Derbyshire helped himself to two tries in the opening six minutes of the game. The first came off the back of a penalty where Jack powered through a gap to cross with his second being made by Lewis Else who dropped a lovely little kick into Derbyshire’s hands to cross. Ridyard was successful with one of the conversions. 10-0.

Ten minutes later Workington responded. With good field position right in front of the sticks, Workington’s forwards got to work with Jake Bradley crashing over from a matter of yards. Carl Forber added the extras. 10-6

With twenty-four minutes gone, the floodgates opened for the Hornets. Luke Nelmes grabbed himself his first Hornets try as he collected a lovely little offload from Deane Meadows to dive under the posts. Ridyard converted. 16-6.

‘Nelmsey’ doubled his tally for the day two minutes later. In what seemed a carbon copy of his first he picked up a brilliant pass out of acting half from Aiden Roden before diving through for another. Ridyard again converted. 22-6.

With seven minutes of the half to go, the Hornets forwards continued to cause havoc amongst the Workington rear-guard. Captain Duane Straugheir led by example powering through multiple tackle attempts to cross down the left. Ridy again added the two. 28-6.

‘Straff’ then copied his forward partner to grab himself a second in as many minutes. Duane collected the ball and thundered through on the right edge this time. Ridyard missed the kick. 32-6.

As the hooter sounded, the Hornets were awarded a penalty for a ruck infringement 25m out, Martyn Ridyard quickly took control of the situation and elected to take the two. Something which, of course, he nailed. 34-6. A brilliant first half of rugby league from Hornets who excelled in the sunshine.

The second forty got underway with a Workington forward being sent to the sin bin for repeated infringements which our referee had simply had enough of. The Hornets took full advantage of the extra man and crossed through Oliver Brookes as he collected a perfect Ridyard pass. The Ridyard conversion hit the post and stayed out. 38-6.

On fifty-nine minutes, Rochdale Hornets full-back Gregg McNally hit a career landmark 200th career try. A trademark try for a real stalwart of the game, Gregg hit the attacking line late before being released in the corner and showing a finishing prowess which teams up and down the country have feared for years. His good mate Ridyard added the extras to the landmark try. 44-6.

Four minutes later, Zarrin Galea scored a mere consolation try for Workington. After being released down the left, Galea sped away from the on-rushing defenders to score. Forber converted. 44-12.

Two minutes after the visitors scored, the Hornets hit back. Ben Forster hit a great line which split the Workington defence apart strolling in to join his fellow forwards on the trysheet. Ridyard converted and brought up fifty points for the Hornets. 50-12.

Lewis Else rounded off the victory in trademark magical fashion. The dynamic half-back chased his pinpoint kick over the top of the Workington defensive line to touch down and score. Ridyard converted. 56-12.

A real standout performance from the Rochdale Hornets saw them run in ten tries against a high-quality Workington Town side in what could be the best performance the Hornets have shown this season. The chance to make it three wins in a row comes around this Sunday as they travel north to take on Newcastle Thunder in a 3pm kick-off.

Rochdale Hornets: McNally, Brookes, Juma, Derbyshire, Forber, Ridyard, Else, Dayes, Roden, Nelmes, Forster, Straugheir, Meadows. Interchanges: Openshaw, Andrade, Baldwinson, Brannan.

Tries: Derbyshire (2), Nelmes (2), Straugheir (2), Brookes, McNally, Forster, Else

Goals: Ridyard (8/11)

Man of the Match: Gregg McNally


Report by Thomas Pearson


Rochdale Hornets v Workington


Rochdale Hornets v Workington


Rochdale Hornets v Workington


Rochdale Hornets v Workington


Rochdale Hornets v Workington


Rochdale Hornets v Workington


Rochdale Hornets v Workington


Rochdale Hornets v Workington

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