Thu 27 Apr 2017 14:36

Pocklington made a satisfying start to their North 1 East league campaign with a 25-7 bonus point victory over local rivals, Malton & Norton, thanks to a dominant second half performance.

It was still close at the interval, when Pocklington led 15-7, but the home side spent virtually the whole of the second period in Malton territory, adding two more tries in the process; and the visitors only escaped upfield in the dying minutes when the result was already decided.

Pocklington took an early lead through a Nathan Saltmer penalty, and the same player dived over in the corner soon after, only for the last pass to be adjudged just forward. On the quarter hour a long diagonal kick saw Pocklington win back the ball on the right and scrum half Ben Rees plunged over for the opening try.

Malton were straight back in contention, they were held on the line and home skipper Rees sent to the sin bin. From the resultant scrum Malton shunted over for a converted pushover try to cut the deficit to a point.

Pocklington crossed again on the half hour, No 8 Joe Brown and wing Billy Hardy attacking down the right before the ball was brought back left where hooker Dave Birch dived over.

Pocklington went onto the offensive at the start of the second half and stayed there. The persistent rain made handling increasingly difficult and Pocklington lost possession half a dozen times in good positions in sight of the Malton line. Eventually the pressure told and Malton were dented down the left before Jack Holbrough popped a pass to his brother Joe in midfield for the latter to score.

Malton tried hard to break the shackles, but Pocklington kept returning with interest and pulled clear with their fourth bonus point try inside the final quarter. Once again the Holbrough brothers combined in the middle for fly half Joe to power over for his second score and complete the scoring.

The Panthers also had a good win at Malton. Debutant back row Owen Jackson led the way, teenagers Jed Jackson, Tom Hesmondhalgh and Shaun Williamson scored tries and Sam Britton kicked a conversion.

The Pilgrims gave a good account of themselves at Goole 2nds. From 17-0 down at the interval they fought back to 17-12 with tries by Kym Russell and Wayne Grainger and a Harry Jackson conversion before their comeback ran out of time.

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