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Man Met shut out University of Manchester in bonus point derby win as captain Taylor leads by example

  • Man Met victorious in Varsity match
  • More than 500 MMU students turn out to roar team to victory
  • UoM fail to score a single point

Man Met firsts dominated a lacklustre University of Manchester first team 36-0, leaving them scoreless at a packed Sedgley Park.  

An emphatic performance by MMU captain Chris Taylor saw him cross the line twice, with further tries from Simpson, Taylor and Fray.  

A strong attack paired with an aggressive blitz defence saw MMU comfortably win their varsity match as UoM failed to get started. 

From kick off it was clear this was a derby game. MMU chants rung loudly from the stand and the game was started with a crunching tackle by UoM. All in all, four players were sent to the sin bin, two from each team, in each half, and the intensity of the tackles did not drop at all throughout the game. 

Both teams had a first half that was littered with errors, but the first points of the game came from MMU fly half Cosh as he slotted an early penalty over from the 10-metre line following UoM hands in the ruck. 

Despite the solid start, MMU conceded several penalties, meaning UoM slowly crept out of their half and into the MMU 22.  

UoM’s best chance of the game came from a penalty in the MMU 22. They opted for the corner and after being inches away from the try line, a jarring tackle from MMU centre Nathan Burns forced a fumble and the ball was cleared.  

MMU began to pick up steam coming into the latter stages of the first half and it looked like the UoM defence would soon waiver. After a yellow at 30 minutes for the visitors, MMU capitalised. A superb run by centre Burns saw him beat three tackles and come inches away from the line. MMU won a scrum in UoM’s 22 soon after and a long miss pass by Cosh found winger Simpson who dived over the line. The conversion was missed leaving MMU 8-0 up. 

The UoM scrum was a mess, with countless scrums lost to an unforgiving MMU pack. 

The second try came soon after as MMU lock James made a sublime line break, bouncing off a tackle and fending off another until he was eventually tackled over the whitewash. This time Cosh converted.  

As the half time whistle approached, a kick stabbed into the MMU goal line was calmly dealt with by full-back Pearson however MMU’s Ryan Jones was shown a yellow card.  

As the second half progressed it was clear that the UoM players were getting frustrated as their heads dropped and they lost their discipline. 

Captain Chris Taylor scored two converted tries, with one coming from a lovely routine from the lineout. The captain put in countless crunching tackles and some hard runs.  

MMU Head Coach Rob Jones said: “He’s a true leader, his development this year had been superb on the field and his leadership development has really come on. He’s really matured and we’re definitely a better team with him”. 

The mounting pressure eventually turned into points as MMU’s Druw Fray forced his way over the line to give his team the bonus point, with Cosh adding the two points. The final points of the game came from a penalty in the UoM 22, which Cosh punted over. 

Speaking after the game MMU forward Alex Brooks said: “It’s a massive win for the boys, Derby day is always the one that as a team you remember. Fantastic to nil them and get the bonus point win.” 

Attendance: 600 | Tries: Simpson, James, Taylor x2, Frey | Cons: Cosh 4 | Pens: Cosh x2 

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