Major test of character as Brid pay call
Old Crossleyans host Bridlington tomorrow (2.15) in their continued battle to beat the drop in Yorkshire One. Having lost to Selby, Heath and West Park Leeds in their last three games, a meeting with third-placed Brid, who beat visitors York 31-10 last week, represents a very tough task.
To have a chance the Broomfield men will have to try to erase memories of their 95-27 defeat on the east coast in the autumn - probably the low point of their season.
Last Saturday’s 22-18 defeat at West Park Leeds, who scored a late try to grab the spoils, was a huge disappointment.
Rugby chairman Howard Cooper said: “Last week we did everything but win the game. losing out to the last move of the match.
“We have to start turning pressure into points and start crossing the try line more often.
“Ryan Sweeney’s goal kicking was top draw with six out of six penalties converted, but despite dominating, especially in the second half up the slope and into the breeze, we couldn’t score a try.
“This week we have to reverse a huge defeat away at Bridlington earlier in the season and need to take every opportunity offered to do so.”
Forwards Kev McGill and Sam Broughton return but Luke Saltonstall is unavailable and Chris Seymour and Cayci Pearson are both injured.
Sweeney’s boot gave Crocs an 18-15 lead going into the closing seconds last Saturday.
However, a maul involving almost all of the home side produced a match winning try for the young hosts and there was no time to restart after the successful conversion from Ed Crossland.
Bizarrely, Crocs’ losing bonus point moved them out of the bottom two, above Selby who lost 20-0 at home to Malton and Norton.
However, West Park Leeds are now only three points behind the pair of them with Yarnbury, beaten 15- 14 at home by Hullensians, four in front.
Crocs, who had won the first meeting 26-21 in mid-October, were 12-0 down after 10 minutes yesterday.
The hosts scored a pushover try credited to No 8 John Fletcher and crossed again via centre Sam Booth, Crossland converting.
Play swung from end to end and while Crocs again showed little cohesion, they forced their hosts into conceding penalties and Sweeney’s deadly left boot hit the target four times to get the visitors on terms two minutes before the interval.
Jack Hammond made a shortlived appearance and forwards Cayci Pearson and Manny Riaz also went off injured.
Centre James Wainwright was doing his best to get Crocs going and Sweeney kicked the Broomfield men into a 15-12 lead, only for Crossland to reply after 55 minutes.
Sweeney restored the visitors’ advantage with 10 minutes left but Crocs were then under the cosh and they were unable to hold out, flanker Clayton Hill getting the allimportant score for the hosts. Halifax Vandals travel to thirdfrom bottom Leeds Corinthians tomorrow with an eight point lead at the top of Yorkshire Four.
They will be looking to complete a double after a 14-0 home win in early November.
Jamie Bloem’s men kept the pot boiling with a 31-11 home win over Ossett last Saturday.
Skipton beat Wensleydale 20-3 in a contest between two of the other promotion contenders.
Josh Kelly for Rishworthians last weekend
Anthony Shoesmith scores for Rishworthians in their fine win at Roundhegians
Pictures: Jade Smith