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Keighley make bow with narrow defeat
Keighley 13 Durham City 14 A depleted Keighley side suffered a narrow defeat in their first match in North One East after promotion last season.
Early pressure from the hosts told and a neat pass down the blindside gave hooker Will Armitage the chance to cross in the corner.
Although both teams were evenly matched in most phases of play, Durham dominated the lineouts.
Just before half-time a plentiful supply of clean possession and good close support from the forwards led to a ruck deep in Keighley territory.
Durham’s lively scrum half Paul Armstrong found a gap on the edge of the ruck and dived over between the posts, converted by centre K Dias.
The second half was very much an arm wrestle. The deadlock was broken when the Keighley scrum half was red carded for retaliation.
Even though they had a player dismissed Keighley were surprisingly awarded a penalty for the original offence, which Ben Blackwell gratefully converted.
Durham hit back when, after a series of powerful drives, scrum half Armstrong took advantage to score his second try, which he also converted.
As the final whistle beckoned, Keighley, with some superb handling from the forwards, forced their way to the Durham twenty two, quick ball gave outside half Danny McGee the time to float a long pass to winger Mick Phillips to cross in the corner.
Unfortunately for Keighley centre Ben Blackwell was unable to land the conversion.