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Keighley off to winning start
12:34pm Thursday 12th September 2013 in Sport
Buy this photo » Keighley's Gavin Duffy makes a break
Keighley 26 Wibsey Warriors 18
Keighley got off to a winning start in their first game in the Pennine League top flight, with two late tries being enough to see off Wibsey at Rose Cott-age.
Playing with the slope in their favour in the first half, Keighley started with some good early defence to pin Wibsey deep in their own half.
But on five minutes, the visitors scored the first points of the day with a well-taken try out wide from centre Nick Fortaine after some quick play-the-balls. Lewis Barrett added the extra two.
From the restart, Keighley’s defence stopped Wibsey from gaining metres and forced them to kick from inside their own half, giving the home side good field position to attack from.
They scored their first try on ten minutes following a scrum 20 metres out. For-mer Cougars player Gav Duffy crossed the line on the first tackle with some good footwork and a good hand-off, Callam Hud-son’s conversion levelling the scores at 6-6.
Keighley’s defence limited Wibsey’s chances of scoring, and when they did come close, the final pass let them down.
After some pressure on the visitors’ line, Keighley were awarded a penalty, and from the resulting tap Danny Lunn went over the line following some soft defence, with Hudson add-ing the extras. Keighley had some good chances to add to their tally but could not find the final pass.
It took until the 30th min-ute for the next score, and it again went to Duffy after hooker Danny Barrett fed him wide on the right to cross in the corner.
Wibsey came out for the second half leading 16-6 but again it was the visitors who came up with the first points of the half when stand-off Luke Helliwell crossed under the posts following some sloppy Keigh-ley defence.
Now just four points in arrears, the visitors looked to have the upper hand and began to make inroads into the Keighley half.
On 55 minutes, they cross-ed the line again, this time out wide on the left. With Keighley’s defensive line stretched, full back Jimmy Rodger was left with an easy score and Barrett added the goal to put them 18-16 in front.
A fantastic cover tackle by Chris Dooling on Fon-taine prevented Wibsey from stretching their lead and it seemed to kick-start the home side into action.
They camped in the visitors’ half but could not find the final pass to break the line.
Finally, in the 70th minute the scoreboard ticked over again thanks to a Hudson penalty following a high tackle on Duffy which levelled the scores.
With five minutes to go, Wibsey had a chance to go in front from a scrum but again it was Keighley’s de-fence that forced the error, and from the scrum they made some good metres.
On the fourth tackle, skipper Danny Snowden fed centre Danny Spencer and he raced 50 metres before being held just short of the line.
But Keighley moved the ball to the right and it was Duffy who scored in the corner for his hat-trick off a good ball from Jamie Stephenson.
With time up on the clock, on the last play Hudson delivered a lovely cross-field kick that Spencer collected after outjumping everyone, crossing the line to make the final score 26-18.
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