Broadley grabs a hat-trick in Tigers revenge

Tigers Jamie Broadley races through for a try vs Hull Ionians
Tigers Jamie Broadley races through for a try vs Hull Ionians

A five-try fest - three of them from Jamie Broadley - and a sixth win out of the last seven.

What a difference a few months make.

Back in October Sheffield Tigers had been on the receiving end of a 30-17 home defeat by Preston Grasshoppers, fast forward to last Saturday and sweet revenge as the Dore Moor side came away with an excellent 31-21 victory over the sixth-placed side.

Further proof, if any were really needed, that Tigers are really coming to terms with what’s required at National 2 North level.

It was their first ever visit to the ‘Hoppers’ but nothing fazed them as they dominated the first half and then put up a superb rearguard action after the break before sealing victory with two late tries.

Squad rotation saw Mark Chivers, Charlie Cone and Sam Cook on the bench along with Liam Wallace and fit again Alex Drage while in a positional change Will Smyth started in the second row.

Tigers squandered an early try-scoring chance before opening their account in the 12 minute. They won a penalty and elected to kick to the corner, the line out was taken and after a storming drive by skipper Andy Barnes, prop Anthony Ross picked up to touch down.

Jonny West added the conversion and he was on hand to repeat the feat shortly after when a Broadley-Jon Feeley exchange ended with Broadley bagging the first of his hat-trick of tries.

Still Tigers hadn’t finished and extended their lead on the half hour with the try of the match from 60 metres out. Nick ‘Biffo’ Pearson pounced on the ball at the base of the scrum and although it was lost in transit, centre tom outram ripped it back and broadley raced down the line.

He passed inside to Pete Swatkins who off-loaded to John Buchanan and his well-times pass ended with Broadley going over in the corner for an unconverted try.

The home side managed to reduce the gap to 19-7 at half-time and they cut the deficit to five points early in the second half as Tigers found themselves increasingly hemmed in to their own 22.

Drage came on at scrum half and West moved to stand off but the Sheffield side continued to be subjected to long spells of pressure.

However they refused to buckle and four minutes from time they made the game safe and secured a bonus point with their fourth try, and Broadley’s third, which was converted by West.

Two minutes later Swatkins strength enables him to power over in the corner for an unconverted try although Hoppers had the final say with a seven-pointer in the 10 minute of injury time.

Team: Bunting (Cone), Thomson, Ross (Chivers), Smyth, Joel, Mckenzie (Cook), Pearson N, Barnes, West, Pearson J (Drage), Swatkins, Buchanan, Outram, Broadley, Feeley (Wallace).

Man of the Match: Jamie Broadley – hat-trick of classy tries.

Ninth-placed Tigers travel to fifth-placed Luctonians on Saturday in an attempt to play the fixture frozen off three weeks ago.