Bonus point keeps Rishworthians on top

Chris Flanagan
Chris Flanagan

Baildon 10 Old Rishworthians 3

Despite this defeat, Rishworthians remain top of Yorkshire Three thanks to a losing bonus point.

The win put the home side up to second and other results turned the division into a very competitive one between the top seven sides.

But the game between the top two was one most thought should have ended in a draw as both sides defended solidly on their own line.

Games between the two clubs over many years have invariably been close affairs and this was no different.

Rishworthians had the edge in the first half, with plenty of possession although they were not able to turn it into points.

However player coach Damian Ball was pleased with the effort put in by his players.

“It will take time, but we are heading in the right direction,” he said.

Rishworthians crossed the home line three times only to have a score ruled out, with an effort from centre Kurt Sutcliffe looking good after a long kick from Ball was gathered by wing Chris Flanagan, who turned the ball inside.

The visitors’ pack had a strong game throughout with lock Jioti Bakoso outstanding and Nick Faulkner showing an appetite for playing No 8.

The lineout too was particularly successful with good possession being won by Ben Robinson and Fraser Swarbrooke.

Faulkner, Bakoso and prop Reuben Pollard drove Rishworthians on early in the game and came close to registering a score.

The visitors then took the lead with a penalty by stand-off Luke Flanagan, but had to spend a long period on the defensive as Baildon fought back.

Time after time Rishworthians held them off on their own line, but eventually a home prop forward burrowed in from close range to score a converted try.

The visitors fought back and almost got over just before the break after good work by Faulkner and wings Anthony Shoesmith and Chris Flanagan.

The second half was a very even affair with both sides having chances but being unable to convert them.

The only score was a home penalty, although in an exiting end to the game hooker Simon Edmundson almost got over as Rishworthians tried to level the match.