Sandal 2ndXV 22 Wharfedale Development XV 29

WHARFEDALE recovered from a sluggish start to win their Yorkshire Merit Championship North & South first round play-off tie.

Sandal scored an early try before Wharfedale had got into their stride.

Colt Jacob Taylor, who had an outstanding debut at openside flanker, forced the turnover which led to centre Scott Rogers putting the pacy Sam Smith clear to score a try near the posts which Jonny Davies converted.

The reliable boot of Davies extended the lead to 10-5 with a penalty.

Another senior debutant was brought off the bench as Elliot Stockton came on to replace his brother, Adam.

Elliot, like his fellow colts, on the pitch took the game straight to the opposition.

Davies went close before Dan Benson carried hard from the base of a scrum and crashed over. The conversion by Davies extended the lead to 17-5 at the break.

Sandal struck first in the second half when their openside flanker scooped up the ball up at the base of a ruck and made use of some weak defending to score a converted try.

The hosts then had a real purple patch and scored two more tries to lead 22-17.

With the clock ticking down, Wharfedale threw everything they could at the game.

With their line-out chaotic they decided to run a penalty from just inside the Sandal half.

Jim Bowers carried strongly towards the 22 before Davies powered past several defenders to score a try which he was unable to convert.

Wharfedale didn't fancy the prospect of extra-time so they stepped up their efforts.

Davies missed a kickable penalty and Sandal responded by forcing an attacking line-out.

Somehow it was disrupted and Wharfedale go the ball out to winger Smith who beat two defenders as raced away for a stunning try which Rory McNab converted to complete the scoring.