CLITHEROE entertained old friends Carnforth at Littlemoor on Saturday looking to get back on the winning trail.
Carnforth started directly and demonstrated exactly why they are the form team in the league at present with hard running and straight lines which while predicable the Littlemooor men found hard to defend against and after 15 minutes the home team found themselves three tries down and with a further 10 minutes gone a further try was leaked in to make it 26-0.
However, finally the Maroon and Gold rallied to the cause and the tries began to come with a clean catch at the line-out from Rigby setting the ruck, the second phase ball was taken on by Sam Thornber who broke the gain line and the ball was spun out from the ruck to give the backline the chance to execute a well worked move with full back Chris Waddington marking his return to the first team rugby by squeezing between the posts for a score. Fitzhenry took the conversion and suddenly it was Carnforth who were on the back foot as Clitheroe tried to wrestle the advantage of the game from them.
It was Carnforth who struck next with a ball taken against the head near the Clitheroe line and dotted down to score and make the half-time score 7-31.
From the re-start, prop Atkinson cut a dash from the ruck to score an excellent individual try which was also converted, while Carnforth added another out wide after winning good turnover ball from the home team and the score ticked over to 14-36.
Clitheroe renewed their pressure and after a misunderstanding in the Carnforth defence Thornber dived on the ball over the line to score. Carnforth scored again to make it 19-41 and the game had stretched beyond Clitheroe. However, it was the home team who finished the match best and suitably it was Aaron Dixon who was rewarded for all his hard work, scoring to make the final score 26-41. Next week’s game is away at Crosby St Mary’s.
After last week’s disappointing result away at Bolton, Clitheroe’s second string were resolute in their attempts to record a second consecutive home win, this time against Fleetwood, coming out 18-0 winners.
It was Clitheroe who steamed out of the blocks once the whistle blew. Superb interplay between backs and forwards propelled Clitheroe upfield with ease with Brown, Williams and Thatcher prominent in the opening exchanges. Also, fly half Fielding was linking well with his backs outside, namely Fisher, Gretton, Caunce, Keough and Dempsey. Indeed it was Fielding to whom the goal kicking was entrusted and he stepped up after only thee minutes to kick the first points of the game, a penalty from 30 yards out.
It didn’t take him long to score again, this time a five-pointer, which he followed up with a great conversion from the touchline. Apart from a couple of wayward drop goal attempts, Fielding was a class apart during the half. Another penalty and a try in the corner from the excellent scrum half Brown took Clitheroe to a 18-0 lead at half-time.
After the turn round, Fleetwood came to life and provided a significantly sterner test for Clitheroe. That said, Clitheroe stuck to their task with no short amount of grit and determination and managed to keep the opposition to nil despite being under pressure for long periods.
Next week sees the 2nds travel over the hill to play Burnley 3rds who haven’t yet found much success this season. Kick-off will be 2-15 p.m. with a 12-25 p.m. meet for those selected.