Cleckheaton maintain unbeaten home record as Beverley suffer

Cleckheaton got 2015 off to a terrific start with a 20-17 victory over high-flying Sale.

After trailing 10-6 at the break, two tries won the match and maintained Cleckheaton’s unbeaten home league record.

An opportunist try from Chris Mayor put Sale ahead before penalties were exchanged and a drop goal by the outstanding Michael Piper kept Cleckheaton within a score at the break.

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A determined second-half performance saw Cleckheaton drive over the line twice, with Ben Thrower and Rob Afoa Peterson getting the touchdowns and Ross Hayden succeeding with two difficult conversions.

Sale scored a late try but Cleckheaton held firm for their fifth successive league victory.

Morley picked up another important point courtesy of an 18-11 home defeat at the hands of third-placed Firwood Waterloo.

A try from lock Tom Richmond saw Morley lead 5-3 after seven minutes before Kenny Sewell’s penalty extended the advantage.

The visitors hit back with three successive unconverted tries but fly- half Sewell made sure there was only one score in it at half-time with his second kick.

Morley appeared to be in control of the second half but too many opportunities were spurned.

Huddersfield YMCA fell to a 24-8 defeat at home to Wirrall, who had begun the day four places below them, but who took a 7-0 lead and went on to score two further tries, only stalling momentarily to a penalty from full-back Gavin Stead.

At 21-3, Wirrall added to their lead with a penalty in the second half, leaving YMCA to score a consolation try.

Sheffield Tigers beat Billingham 41-20 and although the game was scrappy, Tigers looked dangerous going forward and offered a threat every time they enjoyed a sustained period of possession.

Apart from one Billingham try, Tigers had it all their own way in the opening 40 minutes as tries from Peter Swatkins, Biff Pearson and Henry Packard were converted by Tom Outram to make it 24-5 at the break.

Second tries for Swatkins and Packard, as well as a try and conversion from Outram saw the game out.

Beverley went down to their heaviest defeat for many years at Burnage where all the scoring came from open play and the hosts ran out 103-0 winners.

Six tries in the first half, five of them converted, gave Burnage a 47-0 interval lead and nine converted tries in the second took them over 100 points.

Beverley could make little impression on a heavier and faster side which produced some thrilling rugby.

Sandal’s visit to Rosssendale was postponed.