Yorkshire Men’s League: Smith spurs Siddal to win at Bramley

Byron Smith siddal
Byron Smith siddal

Siddal are the early leaders in the Premier Division of the Yorkshire Men’s League after following up their opening win at home to East Hull with a 20-12 success away to Bramley Buffaloes.

With no National Conference League game, the visitors included forward Byron Smith, getting a run out after fracturing his hand six weeks ago, and he led the Halifax side’s young team very well in an intimidating atmosphere.

The visitors started strongly and were quickly on attack. Hooker Jake Turner led from the front and he was supported well by props Keenan Ramsden and Smith.

Back rowers Dom O’Keefe and Wilf Moxon were also in the thick of the action and it came as no surprise when Siddal took the lead. Turner made the initial break before the ball was moved wide through Ramsden and Aaron Metcalfe, who put Matty Prest in at the corner after eight minutes.

Bramley bounced back after 15 minutes when they moved the ball down the line at speed and winger Rob Brown scorched down the touchline and then moved inside for a try under the posts, which he converted for a 6-4 scoreline.

Siddal clawed their way back in front after 22 minutes. Josh Greenwood-MacDonald kicked wide on the last tackle and Eli Dow drew his marker to put winger Callum Holroyd in at the corner.

The conversion from the touchline was missed but Siddal were 8-6 up and it was a lead they didn’t let slip.

Siddal started the second period strongly. Bramley knocked on from the re-start and the visitors eventually breached Buffaloes’ defence when Gaz English found space to put Eli Dow in for a try. The conversion was again just wide but Siddal were 12-6 in front.

They had to endure a period of Bramley pressure with O’Keefe, Moxon and Smith not giving an inch in defence.

The Buffaloes launched a high kick on the last tackle which was brilliantly taken by Holroyd when surrounded by home players. He sped 90 yards down field before being tackled just short, but with the Bramley defence not yet back, the ball was moved inside for Dow to score. Rourke Woolley’s conversion increased the lead to 12 points.

Woolley put the game beyond the Buffaloes with a penalty after 65 minutes.

Siddal continued to soak up pressure with Turner and Alex Oldroyd defending like demons. Bramley scored a consolation try through centre Kieran Hudson five minutes from time, which was improved by Brown.