Round 7 Thunder v Tigers match report
Round 7 saw the final home game for the Thunder in 2014, taking on league newcomers Tyne Tees Tigers. Both teams were looking for their second win of the season with Sheffield coming in off a much improved performance but loss to Nottingham and Tyne Tees losing at home to league leaders Manchester.
The game started off in quick fashion and it was the visitors who took the early advantage as a slow start from the Thunder midfield allowed some easy clearances from the ball-ups and a quick two goal lead before Sheffield even put a point on the board. The home team eventually kicked into gear and slotted a couple of goals of their own to bring the game back under control as key players James Cossins and Ryan Bower created opportunities through the midfield. Despite the best efforts of the Thunder, Tyne Tees we’re keen not to let Sheffield take too much control with some good movement leading to some nice leads meant that the first quarter came to an end with Sheffield leading by just two goals.
As the second quarter got underway the Thunder were determined to try and put a stamp on the game which they started a little slow. They didn’t disappoint with some good links down the field and key crumbing off well contested marking competitions all leading to them kicking eight goals in total for the quarter Sheffield and seeming to be on top. Tyne Tees however weren’t to be counted out as the efforts of the Tigers kept them ticking over with two goals and the pressure they put on meant the Thunder had to work for all their goals with the half coming to a close with the Thunder leading 13.7 (85) to 5.5 (35).
Heading into the Premiership Quarter both sides we’re determined to up the tempo, the Tigers keen to pull back some of the lead built up by Sheffield who in turn were keen to take advantage of their more experienced squad and kick on to put the game out of reach. Much like the first quarter though the Tigers started a little more eager, kicking the first goal. From there though the home side took control with further goals from forwards Simon Vardy and Marc Barr alongside James Lee meaning a five goal quarter and a strong performance in the back line from Callum Merrick and Tom Pullinger keeping the away team to just the single goal. This gave Sheffield a firm grasp on the game heading into the final term.
The final term kicked off with a flurry of quick goals for the Thunder as they controlled the ball out of the middle with Simon Vardy stepping back into the ruck and linking well with Ryan Bower, Marc Barr and Mick Kay around the key area. Despite the early bombardment from Sheffield, Tyne Tees were not about to let their heads drop and with good numbers on the bench meaning some fresh legs on rotation, the game came to a close with the Tigers creating three great chances and slotting the last few goals of the game.
Although the final score came out as Sheffield Thunder 21.12 (180) defeating Tyne Tees Tigers 9.6 (60) it didn’t reflect the competitive nature of the game as the Tigers fought to the final whistle.