Rochdale continued their eleven match winning run with a ruthless destruction of visitors Sefton at Moorgate Avenue on Saturday. The Dale attack led by a dominant pack and superb linking backs totally overwhelmed a makeshift Sefton side.
The power and pace of wing forward Beltus Nonleh coupled with the great creative skills of Travis Townsend and James Duffy saw Dale rip through their opponents time after time in the opening twenty minutes.
First on the score sheet was evergreen winger Jimmy Flitcroft who latched on to a nice pass from Ollie Coldman to power through to score a fine try converted from the touchline by Coldman 7-0.
Minutes later it was Nonleh again bursting through the Sefton defence following up was Townsend who’s grubber kick did not quite reach Flitcroft but from the scrum Dale won the ball and a series of passes found winger Adam Derbyshire who out paced his opposite number to score in the corner 12-0.
With half an hour gone the score increased to 19-0 when the non-stop Beltus Nonleh broke through from 10 metres and scored his first try of the afternoon Coldman adding the extras. Moments later another good break by scrum half Townsend saw him just run out of room wide on the left wing but ball is re-cycled and falls to Ben Coulter and the prop goes over for the 4th bonus point try again converted by Coldman 26-0.
Sefton make a rare attack down the right flank but a great tackle by Ross Hartley stops them short, with half time looming the shell shocked Sefton defence failed to hold a great driving maul inside their 22 and that man Nonleh is there again battering his way through for a 2nd try with the conversion just wide the half ended 31-0. The second half started with Dale on the attack determined not to let the pressure off and rack up some extra points, the ball was lost in the tackle and the visitors attempted to pass out of trouble but Blair Henry intercepts and his tackled just short of the line, up popped Jack Green who had come on at half time at full back to score from short range the Coldman conversion made it 38-0.
Sefton cannot get out of the midfield in possession with great tackles from Hartley, Nonleh and Tom Helliwell all contributing to the visitors frustration. Dale win a scrum and again its Nonleh supported by Townsend breaking from the back to pass wide to linking full back Green who is forced into touch just short of the line. Dale win a line out on the Sefton 22 and the ball is soon across to the ever eager Henry who runs out of room in the corner the ball comes inside and a good short pass by Duffy sees Dom Macklin burst through the centre to score , the conversion is just short so 43-0 with 10 minutes to go.
Tom Callaghan who had come as sub at half time had done his usual share of tackling but it was in attack he next shone taking the ball off the back of a long line out throw on the visitors 22 he burst through several tackles and passed short to Coldman who found Duffy coming through at pace and crashing over for a fine try the conversion was good so 50-0 was the round figure as the final minutes ticked down at the end of a fine performance the referee who had been largely anonymous was forced to give two yellow cards for a slight altercation at the scrum.
From the penalty Dale took a line out and the ball came through several hands finally finding Green backing up from deep to slot over for his 2nd try and a final score of 57-0 many mentions of Heinz varieties from whits on the balcony.
A superb performance from Rochdale Beltus Nonleh again probably man of the match but all round in both attack and defence Dale were excellent. Next week it’s the away trip to Winnington Park and a spot of revenge for the early season loss. The coach leaves at 11.00 am another must win game.
David Rhodes R.R.U.F.C.