Yorkshire Division One

Old Rishworthians 29 Keighley 7

KEIGHLEY crashed to defeat in this mid-table battle in Yorkshire Division One, despite being territorially dominant and having plenty of possession.

Unfortunately they lacked accuracy and were too prone to giving the ball away.

The first 20 minutes were a stalemate; Rishworthians were dominant in the scrum but were unable to gain any territory due to excellent defensive work from the visitors.

Keighley camped themselves in the Rishworthian's half and eventually some class back play gave winger Jack Atkinson a clear run in to score in the corner, Alex Brown added the conversion.

Rishworthians responded with fine forward driving play led by mobile loose head prop Harry Whitfield.

The pressure told and they were unlucky not to score, a final pass was adjudged to be forward.

Keighley, in an attempt to move the ball wide at every opportunity, were caught out at the contact area, the Rishworth forwards were more aggressive and were able to pick off poorly supported ball carriers. With the extra possession gained from the forwards, Rish gained confidence and a simple try for number eight Gerard Rollings.

Near the half-time whistle, scrum-half Ed Cockcroft kicked a penalty.

Keighley, at the restart, were quickly on top, their second rows James Fox and Stuart Inman were playing really well making the hard yards.

Good field position and quick possession gave hard-working wing forward Shaun Minikin the chance to break through, he came very close to scoring, but once again the ball was stolen at the breakdown by the well organised back row.

Keighley, returning to the attack, were deep in opposition territory when a long loose pass was picked off by Rishworthian winger Tony Shoesmith who ran 70 metres to score under the post, converted by Cockcroft.

With their noses in front and an opposition who lacked composure Rishworthians turned the screw.

Pressure told, prop Whitfield was able to make ground too easily and, breaking through lacklustre tackles, he slipped the ball inside to fellow prop Josh Crickney who crashed over, Cockcroft added the extras.

Keighley managed a number of forays into Rishworthians' territory but with confidence ebbing away and lacking composure they were unable to turn the pressure into points.

Near the end of the game, Rishworthians, with an unassailable lead, moved the ball around, when a gap in defence appeared centre Ben Sutcliffe was through to score, Cockcroft converted.

Although the scoreline suggests a resounding victory, the Keighley possession and territorial statistics show that the score should have been much closer, unfortunately not retaining possession at key moments cost them dearly.