On a gloomy afternoon at the Avenue, spirits were lifted for the home support with a splendid performance by the Greens.
The result could have been different if Richmond had been more precise in finishing well-constructed moves.
Pressure from the home side’s defence kept them in the game and then they managed to get the outstanding Taylor Prell into space twice in the last five minutes.
The first break led to a penalty try and a yellow card and then he wrapped up the game with another excellent run from halfway, chipping the full-back and gathering the ball to score between the posts.
Wharfedale started strongly and took the lead with a catch and drive before forcing Josh Burridge over for an unconverted score.
Richmond were limited in their attacking chances but scored two tries before half-time to lead 14-5. James Faulkner and Jamie Gibbs were the try-scorers with Thomas Platt converting.
The home side scored first in the second half through Cicognini’s try which Tom Davidson converted before adding a penalty to edge Wharfedale into a one-point lead.
An unconverted try from Tim Walford took Richmond back into the lead before Prell made his decisive moves.
Wharfedale’s fifth win from 13 games left them in 11th place, and they look well clear of any relegation danger.
A moment of magic from Danny Cipriani set up Sale Sharks to edge out fellow Aviva Premiership northerners Newcastle 18-13 at Kingston Park.
The Falcons led 13-11 deep into the second half when the former England number 10 ran it from close to his own line, chipped, chased and collected before delivering a pass for Mark Jennings to send Jonny Leota clear for a try which Cipriani also converted.
Northampton Saints moved two points clear of second-placed Bath at the top of the Premiership as they heaped more grief on basement side London Welsh with a 43-14 victory.