Watene prominent as Rishies get off the mark

Reuben Pollard against Baildon
Reuben Pollard against Baildon

Old Rishworthians 31 Baildon 0

Rishworthians finally broke their duck in Yorkshire Two and demolished the side that was promoted with them.

They were soon on top and dominated play, scoring five tries to gain a bonus point, but it could have been more.

Former Halifax RL favourite Frank Watene was outstanding in the forwards, linking well with No 8 James Clarke, while fullback Joe Billing was the pick of the backs and was involved in all that was best of the back play.

Rishworthians were on the attack from the outset, but took a while to break through the Baildon defence.

They opened the scoring with some great forward play with Watene and prop Reuben Pollard prominent, before the ball went wide and centre Chris Flanagan broke through to put teenage winger Josh Deane in at the corner.

The winger was wide with the kick, but had a fine game, capped by an outstanding tackle in the second half, which brought high fives from the rest of the home players.

There were strong runs from Clarke and centre Kurt Sutcliffe as Rishworthians piled on the pressure, but failed to turn it into points.

The forwards took charge with Watene again providing the impetus, before the ball went out and Flanagan ran in to touch down.

Deane’s conversion hit the post, but the home side felt comfortable to go into the break leading 10-0.

They started the second half where they left off and soon went further ahead. The ball went wide from a penalty before Clarke popped up in the middle to score. Fraser Swarbrooke added the conversion.

Billing almost got in at the corner before Rishworthians got the bonus point try they craved.

After a strong run by replacement flanker Nick Faulkner the ball went out to left wing Anthony Shoesmith, who went over in the corner. Swarbrooke added the conversion.

The Copley men kept the pressure on and shortly before the end Watene capped a fine performance by slipping the ball in the tackle for lock Callum Heseltine to touch down near the posts. Swarbrooke added the conversion.

Rishworthians seconds also had a fine win at home, beating Otliensians 32-17, with winger Rhys Town scoring a hat trick of tries. Cameron Duffy added a fourth and kicked a conversion. Two other conversions came from Lee Atkinson and Gerard Rollings added two penalties.