Chorley blasted by the Heath
Dave Hadfield was a schoolboy convert to rugby league, the game which, one way or another, has dominated his life ever since. After working for newspapers in Shropshire and Blackpool (where he covered the fortunes of Blackpool Borough) he travelled the world, working mainly in Hong Kong and Sydney. He became The Independent's rugby league man in 1990 and has written five books on the game and broadcast extensively for Sky and the BBC. Dave played his last game at the age of 53 and would have set up a try if anyone could have been bothered supporting his break. When not writing about the sport, he now limits himself to a bit of tick and pass with his local club, the Bolton Mets. Family includes supporters - of varying degrees of dedication - of Salford, Wigan, Sheffield Eagles and St George Illawarra.
Monday 15 January 1996
Chorley 12 Thatto Heath 27
One side from St Helens tasted Cup glory this weekend as Thatto Heath became only the third amateur club to knock professional opposition out of the Silk Cut Challenge Cup.
The team from the part of town best known for producing Alex Murphy outplayed Chorley to ensure that they will be in the hat for this evening's draw, with the chance of a fourth-round tie against their mighty neighbours or any of the other big guns.
Their winger Ray Waring was the man who set them on their way. Although renowned for his long-distance tries, his first-half hat-trick came from close-range opportunism after Chorley had failed to cope with a variety of clever kicks.
All the home side could manage by way of response was a brace of goals from Mike Smith, and when the veteran ex professional, Norman Barrow, put Heath further ahead with a drop goal after the break, the amateurs were firmly in control.
Mark Pilkington went over and although Chorley briefly threatened to fight back with tries from Ian Marsh and Billy Danawe, Heath were in no mood to follow the St Helens fashion for honourable defeat.
Mark Cook, who was voted man of the match, added two late penalties to his three goals to complete a bitter-sweet afternoon for the Chorley captain, Chris Honey. Formerly a Thatto Heath stalwart, he remains heavily involved there to the extent that he surely became the first chairman ever to be knocked out of the Challenge Cup by his own club.
Chorley: Clayton (Bramwell, h-t); M Smith, Stewart, Holden (N Briscoe, 55), Marsh; Fell, Parker; C Briscoe, Ruane, Barr, Danawe, Honey, Bimson.
Thatto Heath: Donaghue; Pilkington, Gannon, Ford, Waring; Cook, Hughes; Ashurst, L Smith, (Waterworth, 80) Mitchell (Horton, 75), Moran, Barrow, Harris.
Referee: P Grimshaw (Manchester).
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