Crocs gutsy in defeat against high flying Ripon

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On a heavy pitch and in intermittent rain Ripon, fourth in Yorkshire Two after 10 games, won two tries to none against second from bottom Old Crossleyans.

Crocs belied their lowly position with a sterling performance, a weakened team securing a losing bonus point with the last kick of the game.

Both teams were well matched for the first 30 minutes, played mainly in midfield mud until Crocs ace marksman Ryan Sweeney converted a 30 metre penalty in front of the posts after 35 mins to lead 3-0.

A Ripon penalty on halfway found touch 10 metres out and from the line out centre Dominic Butler touched down for Ripon’s first try, converted by fly half Richard Scull, to lead 3-7 at halftime.

Ripon eventually emphasised their league position when from a penalty the ball was spread wide and lock Peter Taylor plunged over, the conversion putting Ripon ahead 12-3 on 68 minutes.

Crossleyans kept going forward, led by centre captain Jack Hammond, who was nearly through with a trademark weaving run Crocs continued to attack winning a penalty 40 metre out, Sweeney just missing.

From another penalty award 30 metre out Crocs opted to tap and go but lost possession and Ripon cleared long only for the home team to keep driving back through the mud to 15 metre out near touch winning another penalty.

With only minutes left, Sweeney made a magnificent strike of the wet ball to secure the much needed losing bonus point at 12-6.