Clitheroe RUFC hunting for elusive victory

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CLITHEROE are still searching for that elusive win.

Down in deepest Didsbury was Bedians’ lair. A fine one it was too – an amazingly firm-ish pitch, ideal for running open rugby the prop forwards groaned – only a short stud needed.

Skipper Nathan Peel was unavailable, however there was a welcome return to first XV action for Mark Preston, James Sharples, Sam Thornber and Stuart Railton.

It was a nip and tuck first half, and in fact it was all Bedes for the opening period as Clitheroe could not get their game going. Even for the notorious slow starters, Clitheroe were mentally still half way down the motorway.

Bedes were on fire out wide, and their outside backs had plenty of gas and broke through on more than one occasion causing alarm bells ringing.

Only some excellent last gasp tackles from full back Smith kept them at bay for long stretches.

But just as Clitheroe thought they had weathered the opening storm, Bedes at last were through and under the posts.

Undaunted the Maroons fought back and began to make some headway. Some barnstorming runs from prop Ben Graves and lock Alex Hough gained the field position.

Then a penalty chance came their way and Martin Lafranceschina opened Clitheroe’s account with a well struck kick. A similar one, just on the stroke of half time, just shaded past the post. But at only 7-3 down at the turnaround Clitheroe were still quietly confident.

The start of the second half saw Bedians quicker out of the blocks and they again scored a converted try to put clear daylight between the teams.

As the second period continued Bedes managed to wrestle control of the game and were causing Clitheroe no end of bother in retaining procession. Some sharp play at the breakdown saw the ball come back on the home side of the rucks on far too many occasions.

As legs began to tire, Clitheroe exhausted their rather slim bench resources and still kept up their spirited attempts to force a score. But it was the Disbury lads who had the final say in scoring another try under the posts.

Maybe not good enough on the day for Clitheroe, marginally second best at the breakdown and at lineout time, but it was enough for the home side to secure victory.

Final Score: Old Bedians 21, Clitheroe RUFC 3