In the land of the prince bishops.


D.o.R
By WW
August 17 2018

I always enjoyed going to County Durham as a child. There was something magical about travelling in the land of the prince bishops. On Saturday I once again travelled north, returning to Darlington for the first time in over 40 years to see Carnegie play a pre-season against Mowden Park.

There are great rail links from Leeds to Darlington. The journey takes less than an hour. We arrived in good time so that we could have a look round this historic town. A twenty minute walk from the town centre brought us to the Mowden Park arena. What a magnificent stadium it is. The first person we met was Chris Stirling who was happy to stop and chat about rugby. Chris exudes positivity and 10 minutes with him left us feeling as though we might well be at the start of something considerably better than we have been used to.

I had travelled north mainly to see how our new halfbacks fared. I was not disappointed. JB is a proper scrumhalf with an incisive pass. He gave Brendan great service enabling him to dictate the play. Our backline was always getting good ball at pace with Forsyth & Elder prominent. The first try belonged to the forwards when Matt Smith hit a gap at pace before offloading to the skipper to cross the line. Smith and Beck dominated the lineouts and our new props wore down  the home pack who were spent by the half hour. Park fought back to get on the scoresheet but our new look team were scoring every 10 minutes or so. 

The best move of the game involved a diagonal kick from Cope, picked up by our winger who dibbed a kick inside for the onrushing Elder. He unselfishly passed inside for Forsyth to race in for the first of his brace of tries.

We turned round 26-5 ahead and replaced our props. The scrums were so one-sided that it was a relief for Mowden when the ref went to uncontested scrums. We brought lots of subs on including our backup halves. Both youngsters did enough to suggest that they will get plenty of game time this season. Indeed we have two young 9's and two young 10's to cover for JB & Brendan.

Mowden scored another try near the end through Chris Georgiou against the seven or eight that we got. At full time I felt that we had seen enough good stuff to give us hope for a good season. This was echoed by some of the other Carnegie fans who had made the trip up the A1. As for our hosts I think that they will do well again this season & their stadium would easily be the best in the Championship if they managed to get promotion!

So it was a very satisfactory afternoon from our point of view and  we have good cause to be optimistic for the coming season.

Bring on Harpury!

pqs: qs:
In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: TykesRugby.co.uk (IP Logged)
Date: 18/08/2018 20:05

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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018:09:02:19:02:13 by Wildwillie .

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: JDH (IP Logged)
Date: 18/08/2018 22:01

Not able to make it this aft but the highlights do look encouraging. Looking forward to the season!

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: Wildwillie (IP Logged)
Date: 19/08/2018 06:49

In my haste to get the report up I neglected to mention the performance of Dan Temm at no.8. Dan, who once had a season at Old Crossleyans, is a very mobile 8 with good hands. On Saturday he was everywhere on the field. An impressive debut.

His interview on the offy made me smile when he described the new cricket stand as "a big piece of kit"

(Sm134)

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: Gelbel (IP Logged)
Date: 19/08/2018 12:28

"their stadium would easily be the best in the Championship if they managed to get promotion!"

So we're going up are we WW? 😉 Positivity indeed! 🤗🤗🤗

Nice 8 9 & 10 combo - great signings. Not too much pre-season huffing & puffing - a bit from Mayhew but he played his socks off all match. Hard to pick a MoM - JB probably as it was great to see a proper scrum half.

The line out worked 😯 though the restarts didn't until the last one. Still practice makes perfect.

Fab venue (even if all seated) with good nosh.

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 19/08/2018 13:32

Impressive ground, although I fear for whoever has to pay for the maintenance, security, stewarding, services charges and rates for such an oversized stadium.
If Darlington MP get promoted twice to the Premiership, at 25,500 all-seated capacity, I can only think of Wasps who have a bigger venue.

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: Wildwillie (IP Logged)
Date: 19/08/2018 13:40

Quote:
Gelbel
"their stadium would easily be the best in the Championship if they managed to get promotion!"

Indeed a 25000 all seater with perfect sightlines all round beats a newly refurbished stadium with an exposed all-standing terrace at one end. and food which at best is average and at worst is diabolical.

As Almo points out MP's ground is bigger than all bar one Prem grounds but will cost an arm and a leg to maintain.

(Sm134)

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: Madtyke (IP Logged)
Date: 19/08/2018 14:03

They need to get some lawn weedkiller down in the In Goals as the number of dandelions was terrible..

What was nice to see was a Stand-off not afraid to run at the opposition. The team looked well balanced and the replacements didn't cause a great loss of continuity.

[www.arborfieldoldboys.co.uk]

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: TykeGeorge (IP Logged)
Date: 19/08/2018 20:49

I donít want it to be my last memory of the DMP stadium but yes Madtyke the proliferation of dandelions seemed at odds with a professional playing surface!

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 20/08/2018 07:32

Darlington MP's view of events:

[www.mowdenpark.com]

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: leemingtyke (IP Logged)
Date: 20/08/2018 13:34

Sounds like a positive result and performance. Without wishing to be overly negative, I did see one of mowdens home league games last season and was surprised at the drop in quality from Championship level. That said, the conditions were atrocious and there wasn't much for either team to play for so it could have been that.

As for the stadium, there's no doubt it's an impressive arena but, to me, it's just another another characterless oval new build. I'd prefer Headingley any day.

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 23/08/2018 19:51

OK this could be another thread, but it is worthwhile discussing on our tactics during the game. Cards on the table - I have long since commented that our lack of quality kicking has been a big negative for us. But now we have a 10 who can kick to the wings and play an organised kick-chase.
We all like to see the ball-in-hand try started from our own 22 line, but in the real world that is more likely to lead to a try or penalty to the opposition than a score for us.
Great to see we are adapting the sort of tactics used by the All Blacks. And I think they know a thing or two about rugby.

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: Competitive Dad (IP Logged)
Date: 24/08/2018 10:52

Too many dandelions on tbe grass and DMP not as good as YC.
I can think of over half a millouon reasons why this this may be the case.

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: John R (IP Logged)
Date: 24/08/2018 16:40

I thought our Christian Georgeou went walkabout a couple of years ago giving up playing rugby?

Or is the Darlington MP fullback (Chris G) someone else?

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: opuscoitus (IP Logged)
Date: 24/08/2018 18:38

Quote:
John R
I thought our Christian Georgeou went walkabout a couple of years ago giving up playing rugby?
Or is the Darlington MP fullback (Chris G) someone else?

Same guy, has been playing international rugby for Cyprus I think but while new to Darlington so unsure where his club rugby has been since he left us

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: TykeGeorge (IP Logged)
Date: 24/08/2018 18:49

Think he has been in France. He looked as classy as I remember him playing for us.

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: Beeston Lion (IP Logged)
Date: 24/08/2018 19:03

Bad shoulder injury finished his time at Carnegie but glad to see him back and properly fit again.

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: opuscoitus (IP Logged)
Date: 24/08/2018 19:47

[www.rugbyeurope.eu]

Took some finding but he is an international

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: almostatyke (IP Logged)
Date: 24/08/2018 20:47

Absolutely brilliant research, Opus, congrats!

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: John R (IP Logged)
Date: 28/08/2018 15:08

Don't recall the shoulder injury Beeston?

It looked to me that he wasn't being considered for selection by the panel, so up sticks and went........

Always a class player even back in Academy days. Do you remember when the Academy won the the Yorkshire Cup Final against Hessle, I think and played at Ionians one evening some years ago?

Georgiou was the class player at full back that evening.

Wonder if he might come back now it's a changed management?

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: Gelbel (IP Logged)
Date: 29/08/2018 10:49

He totally knackered his shoulder - couple of times and one last horrendous dislocation (down a Bedford if I remember rightly).

Re: In the land of the prince bishops.
Posted by: John R (IP Logged)
Date: 30/08/2018 09:51

Thank Gel, clearly missed that, wasn't at that Bedford match.

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