North 1 East
Cleckheaton 43 – 5 Percy Park
Thoughts of a rare away win were given a dent even before Saturday when no fewer than 5 changes to the side that played so well against Scarborough the previous Saturday were announced. This is no disrespect to the lads who stepped into the breach to travel away to Moorend and represent Percy Park.
With Ash Smith and Ali Blair not available and 3 second rows in Josh Hedley, Austin Phillips and Karl Thompson out of the picture, Park had to call up Eddie Saint, Steven Dryden, Travis Boward and Kieran Sutherland with 2 of the 4 making their 1stXV debuts. Will Haskins also returned to the side but started on the bench.
The game kicked off at 3pm due to the Cleck Christmas lunch and with less than 3 minutes on the clock the home side were on the score sheet from a catch and drive from a line out after Park were penalised and Dale Breakwell kicked to the corner. Cleckheaton had recently signed 2 disaffected West Leeds players in Breakwell and Danny Booth and both have made an immediate impact of their fortunes.
Fly half Breakwell continued where he left off last week with a fine kicking display and converted the try in the corner to give his side a 7 – 0 lead even before many of the lunch time revellers had made their way to their seats in the stand.
Squally showers and a blustery wind didn’t make handling easy, and for the next 15 minutes Park held out the hosts. Park had a chance to go level in similar fashion to Cleck as they drove a maul 25 metres towards the line before the maul was collapsed and surprisingly the offending player was not shown a yellow card.