West Park Leeds 13

North Ribblesdale 14

NORTH Ribblesdale edged fellow strugglers and old foes West Park Leeds in a must-win game to stave off relegation in Yorkshire Two.

Ribb played downhill and started brightly, but could not turn pressure into points despite the valiant efforts of their forwards who held the upper hand in both scrum and line-out.

West Park looked lively whenever they had possession and against the run of play Booth kicked a penalty and was then the architect for an unconverted try to give the hosts an eight-point lead after 30 minutes.

Things looked bleak for Ribb and with Adam Stubbs yellow carded looked even bleaker, however the Close brothers, Matt and Ian, the evergreen John Thwaite and John Padley refused to buckle.

Ribb took a scrum against the head with seven men, worked the ball wide through Nathan Harding, Michael Thwaite, Ryan Sumner and on to Liam Wallbank, who beat his man to touch down with Thwaite adding the extras to leave things finely balanced 8-7 at the interval.

Playing up the slope was a challenge in itself, but with Stubbs returning Ribb pressed hard and after what seemed an eternity pounding away at the West Park line Stubbs was helped over by youngster Michael Carr. Thwaite added an exceptional conversion from wide out into a swirling breeze.

With the clock running down, Ribb needlessly conceded penalties and on the stroke of full-time the hosts scored a try from lock Gumbs next to the posts. They only needed the conversion to win.

Kicker Booth only took the ball back 10 metres, calmly walked back five paces, began his laboured run up and the hero of the match Padley charged down the kick to give Ribb a much-needed win when all seemed lost.

This gives Ribb a bit of breathing space from the drop zone, but more wins need to follow against lower placed teams.

All the forwards worked hard but special mention goes to Padley, who ultimately was the difference between the sides for more than his final act.