During a tough encounter for the first team against Warrington, supporters of both teams were able to witness the first ‘Learning Disability Rugby League’ match in Yorkshire as the Wakefield Trinity Community Trust took on the Warrington Wolves Foundation.
Both teams provided the crowd of 5,034 with enterprising play and the North Stand rang out in chants as Trinity made a few breaks within the game. The Trin’ squad consisted of a 50-50 split of males and females with Chelsea Sabey and Becky Smith terrorising the Wolves defence.
The final score finished in favour of Warrington Wolves Foundation but there was plenty to cheer about as social media went wild with praise for the player’s efforts.
Wakefield Trinity LDRL 8 Warrington Wolves LDRL 16
The Physical Disability teams took to the field on the back of a spirited fightback from Wakefield Trinity in the Super League fixture and seemingly fancied their chances of recreating that experience.
Warrington started the brighter of the two and scored in the opening five minutes down their left flank where Australian Comedian, Adam Hills, scored the game’s opening try. Seward couldn’t add the two.
It was then the turn of lightning full-back Wil Maudsley, who is registered blind. He took the ball out wide and strolled in despite the attempts to chase back from Ben Nicholson. Seward didn’t miss from in front of the sticks. Warrington led by ten.
Now the teams had settled, Wakefield began to get more ball in hand and caused problems but still remained scoreless thanks to some exceptional defending from Warrington.
Trinity then saw a break in mid-field by Maudsley lead to a try and Warrington led by fourteen points going into half time as Seward failed to goal.
The team talk at half time seemed to regenerate a frustrated Trinity side and they kept Warrington scoreless for the second half. Captain, Darren Dean, scored a try for Trinity which was goaled by Chris Hall with just fifteen minutes remaining. Wakefield were back in the game.
Johnny Humphries Jnr tried hard on the right edge but Shaun Briscoe was marking him very effectively. Trinity just couldn’t find their way over the line.
Then, with two minutes to play, Alex Dickinson found a rare gap in the defence to put the side within a try of levelling up. Adam Fleming couldn’t convert and the scoreline was 10-14.
Wakefield Trinity PDRL 10 Warrington Wolves PDRL 14
Craig Shepherd, Wakefield Trinity Community Trust, said, “We saw some incredible Rugby League from people with intellectual and physical challenges during today’s games. I thought the skill level was high and the crowd were superb at half time. The players are blown away by the support they received. A huge thank you to everyone involved in ensuring both games took place and an even bigger thank you to the supporters of both teams. We hope you enjoyed every minute.”
“We now have 28 registered players with a disability who are part of our provision and I’m certain that will grow over the next six months.”