Thornhill create history with National Cup triumph

Thornhill Trojans celebrate winning the BARLA NAtional Cup for the first time in their history. Pictures: Scott Merrylees.
Thornhill Trojans celebrate winning the BARLA NAtional Cup for the first time in their history. Pictures: Scott Merrylees.

Thornhill Trojans created history last Saturday when they won the BARLA National Cup for the first time, defeating Myton Warriors 17-14 at Featherstone Rovers.

It was an epic battle with a last minute drop goal from man-of-the -match Danny Ratcliffe, enough to take the pressure off and allow Thornhill to wind down the clock and seal victory.

This was a momentous game in the proud history of Thornhill and the 17 players will now become Trojans legends in the passage of time.

Backed by a large and vocal following, the Trojans made the perfect start.

A high kick on the last tackle saw Jake Wilson read the situation perfectly to gather and send Danny Ratcliffe between the posts for a try which Sam Ratcliffe converted.

Shortly after, Liam Morley was forced off injured but his replacement, Luke Haigh, and a reshuffled Trojans team looked to press forward.

A high tackle on Haigh the presented Sam Ratcliffe with the opportunity to kick a penalty goal and extend the lead to 8-0.

Myton were no push overs and played some good rugby, working the ball at speed along the attacking line, creating space for winger Lee James to dart over for an unconverted try in the corner.

Thornhill responded with a try of their own as Danny Ratcliffe intercepted a Myton pass to set up the field position and Haigh’s long pass picked out Sam Ratcliffe perfectly to score in the corner.

The Trojans had a perfect opportunity to gain a foothold on the game when Danny Ratcliffe caught out the Myton defence out with a neat chip forward.

Ratcliffe collected and passed to James Craven but the ball bounced off his chest and the move broke down.

Myton struck again before half-time when the ball was kicked out wide and Lee James pounced to score his second try of the game.

Ash James converted to narrow Thornhill’s half-time lead to just two points.

The second half was a really tense affair with neither side giving an inch.

The only real error came when a high kick was fumbled by the Myton full-back. Thornhill appeared to have got the ball over the try line but the referee ruled knock on.

As the game entered its closing phase Myton took the lead for the first time.

A high kick came down in the in goal area and Lee James plucked it out of the air to complete his hat-trick. The goal was missed but the Hull team now had a two point lead with little more than 10 minutes left on the clock.

Craven made a break which took Thornhill forward and the Trojans then forced Myton to drop out from between their own posts.

Jake Wilson made a good run down the middle before the ball was worked out to George Stott, who powered into the attacking line and the Myton defence couldn’t prevent him from grounding the ball.

The goal was missed and it was Thornhill who now had a slender two point lead.

With a minute left to play Danny Ratcliffe booted over a drop goal and from the kick off, Thornhill wound down the clock.

The full time whistle went and it sparked wild celebrations amongst the Thornhill ranks.