PLAYING against the league leaders, or in this case, league winners, is never easy.
However, Clitheroe took to the field with a good team and were hoping to entertain the suitably large home crowd with a win.
Clitheroe started well, with the forwards retaining possession, and the backs looking dangerous, especially when James Harvey got the ball in the centres.
Dave Watson was marshalling well from scrum half, whilst Dowson and big Lewis Williams were punching holes around the ruck.
The home side were first on the scoresheet after Chorley continued to infringe at the ruck, and James Dickinson stepped up to slot the penalty from 25 yards out.
Unfortunately, Clitheroe started to lose their grip on the game, and with Chorley committing few people to the ruck and spreading the ball wide to their dangerous backs at every opportunity, it was only a matter of time before they scored some tries.
In fact they scored three well-worked tries before half-time and took a deserved lead of 17-3.
Clitheroe started the second half with the good intention to play the way they had at the start of the match, but despite a few forays into the Chorley half they were playing second fiddle.
Giz Williams and Ross Chamberlain had entered the fray by this point, and although they put themselves around the park, they couldn’t quite stem the tide.
That was until Chamberlain made a nuisance of himself and forced a turnover on the Chorley 22.
Watson took charge, and with no mean amount of skills put centre Stott into a lovely gap, and he duly rounded the opposing full back to score a well-worked try.
Harvey took a knock soon after, and this certainly blunted Clitheroe’s attack out wide, but excellent scrambling defence from Stott and Gretton kept Chorley at bay for a little longer.
Eventually the flood gates did open somewhat, and Chorley accelerated away to win the game by some margin.
Man of the match was awarded to Harvey for his tenacious attacking runs, but mentions must go to Gretton for his defensive efforts and Dowson, Holland, Thornber, Harper and the set of brothers Williams and Procters.
Wilkinson’s side play their last league game of the season on Saturday, hosting the league’s second placed team BAe Warton, kick-off 3 p.m.