Clitheroe got off to a sluggish start in their first home league fixture of the season, and ultimately paid a heavy price for in the final reckoning.
With a number of key individuals absent and the also with the Captain away in the Far East on business, it was chatterbox scrum half, Dan Smith who proudly took on the skippers armband for the day.
On a dry and windless day, perfect for running rugby, and with the pitch was in tip top order, a healthy crowd had assembled at Littlemoor to cheer on their maroon and gold hooped heroes on to victory.
But it was not to be. Clitheroe seemed unable to match the intensity of the visiting Crosby St Mary’s and were on the back foot for long periods. Occasional forays into the Crosby half were met with solid resistance and apart from a few dashes from hooker Adam Penney flank forward Luke Hayton, the home side just couldn’t get their game going.
Two missed tackles let Crosby in for their tries to give them a 0-12 lead at the interval. A bit of straight talking in the huddle brought about an improvement in the second period.
A fair bit more zip in their play brought about some improved opportunities.
So much so that when a clean lineout was caught and driven towards the line, the pack ignored the shouts from the crowd to spin it out, but kept it tucked up tightly in an effective, albeit not pretty, driving maul.
Over the line the mass of bodies fell, prop Will Jones coming up with the ball and a big smile, claiming the try.
Clitheroe had their tails up now and began to play with a bit more purpose.
A classic break from centre Chris Waddington saw him carve through the defence, but with the line at his mercy the last line of defence snuffed out a certain score.
All in all, not one for the album, and especially disappointing, after such an encouraging performance the previous week.
Clitheroe have a week off before travelling to local rivals Colne and Nelson RFC on October 5th.