SKIPTON came away winners of a very hard-fought encounter with another of the stronger sides in the division, in perfect conditions for rugby at Sandylands.

The Reds made a great, solid start and after some hard exchanges the first points went to Castleford from a penalty kick at goal. Skipton responded immediately and a brilliant break by Ed Harrison at second row put skipper Hamish Munro clear for an un converted try.

A chance kick down field gave Castleford a line-out close in and they were over for a converted try to stretch their lead to 10-5. The re-start kick did not go 10 metres and Skipton had to make hard yards from the scrum back to maintain their field position until the break.

Skipton made a brilliant start to the second period with young Ben Walker on the wing catching Castleford off-side, but the penalty kick at goal hit the post. Flanker Jordan Wilson was unlucky to receive a yellow card but whilst Skipton were a man down, they were awarded a penalty themselves and this time stand-off Ben Jeffrey made no mistake and slotted the ball to reduce the home side’s deficit.

Skipton Coach Craig Bartlett brought Darren Greenwood into the pack and Lewis Reynoldson and Carl Nicholson into the backs, all of whom made an immediate impression.

Castleford received the first of their yellow cards and a great break down field by Munro saw Skipton close, but not over. Following a second yellow card for Castleford, with seven minutes of the match remaining, a well struck penalty kick at goal by Jeffrey saw Skipton take the lead. Skipton defended tirelessly for the remaining minutes of the game to come out winners by the narrowest of margins.