Vale coach admits to frustration after latest stalemate

Oli Dobson and Rob Ward sprint to claim the ball against Wigton.
Oli Dobson and Rob Ward sprint to claim the ball against Wigton.

Vale of Lune head coach Paul Woodward admitted to being frustrated as his side drew for the fourth time this season against Wigton on Saturday.

The sides played out a 22-22 thriller at Powderhouse Lane in North One West – the Vale’s latest stalemate setting a new club record. 
Woodward said: “It’s very frustrating really.

Paul Woodward.

Paul Woodward.

“With the amount of effort we put I think we did enough to sneak it.

“But we’ve got a youngish side and sometimes we just don’t know how to win a game.”

The Vale now have a free weekend as Widnes have appealed a decision for their December clash to be replayed after the league had originally penalised the Cheshire outfit for a rule infringement.

Widnes won 18-10 at Powderhouse Lane on December 14 but were later pulled up by the RFU North Competitions Committee who ordered the sides to go at it again this Saturday, January 18.

But an outstanding appeal means the Vale have Saturday off with Woodward, a former Widnes captain who lives in the area, admitting the situation is far from ideal.

He said: “It’s a bit strange.

“The league’s decisions usually stand but the longer this goes on the less and less likely it looks like it will get played again.

“I’ve got strong connections with Widnes and was getting bombarded with text messages so it’s a bit close to home!”

In the longer term, Woodward sees the rest of this campaign as one of consolidation, with the Vale currently fourth in North One West.

He said: “This year is all about consolidating and trying to finish as high up the table as we can.

“We can’t get promotion and I think the play-off spot is out of our reach.

“There have been plenty of playing changes with younger players coming in so it’s about consolidating and trying to bring in a couple of experienced players in the summer so we can push for promotion next season.”