With the annual beer festival in full swing, Liverpool St Helens provided plenty of entertainment for a large Moss Lane crowd as they raced to a bonus point lead in just twenty minutes.  Tries from Matt Cunliffe, Alex McBride, Josh Lynch and McBride again, secured the extra point with three successful conversions by young Jamie Morris giving them a 26-0 lead.

They were however halted temporarily in their tracks when a spirited Hoylake side launched a decent attack down the right flank and were awarded a penalty try as a result of a high tackle on the would-be try scorer. 26-7. Running the ball at every opportunity and once again with a referee clearly intent on letting the game flow, LSH created a plethora of chances without actually scoring. However as the half drew to a close,  a neat sidestepping run from hooker Chris Houlton and a third run-in from Alex McBride to complete his hat-trick, both converted, ensured that LSH reached half time well in command with a 40-7 lead.  

With Hoylake embroiled in this season’s battle to avoid the drop, the visitors still had plenty to play for and they immediately notched their second try of the afternoon, courtesy of an interception try close to the LSH line. 40-14. It was now end to end stuff and a typical rampaging run from Dave Cunliffe was continued by brother Matt, finding Josh Lynch in space before the nippy winger sped over for his second try of the afternoon. 45-14. Second rower Mark Potter extended the lead in the 55th minute when latching on to a pass from Dave Cunliffe, 50-14 before Hoylake once again refused to lie down. They made it 50-21 with a fine try, starting in their own half, exploiting the extra space available with two of their own and one of LSH’s all in the bin following an outbreak of argy bargy, completely out of place in an otherwise excellent and sporting game.

Prop Ross Macauley then treated the crowded to a lovely gliding run around the Hoylake defence to score LSH’s ninth try, converted again by Morris, another of the LSH youngsters beginning to making a big impact in the senior game. 57-21. LSH’s score fest was closed by Dan Webster, not long ago a young debutante and this year an ever-present, scoring to make it a perfect 10 for the Moss Laners 64-21 before Hoylake got their deserved reward. With two minutes to go, a short throw from a line out close to the LSH line brought their fourth try. 64-28 No-one at the Lane could begrudge them the bonus point which could make all the difference in their fight for survival.


15 Johnston 14 McBride 13 Cunliffe M 12 Morris 11 Lynch 10 McClurg 9 Wilson (capt) 1 Gore 2 Houlton 3 Fryer 4 Royle 5 Potter 6 Hull 7 Mitchell 8 Webster. 16 MaCauley 17 Arnold 18 Cunliffe D.

John Williams