SKIPTON returned to winning ways in a hard-fought contest at Knottingley, after the enforced break of the December freeze and the Christmas holidays.

Early nerves were soon forgotten as turn-over ball got Skipton into gear and a Knottingley off-side in their own 22 allowed centre Callum Patrick to open the score for the visitors with a well struck penalty. Patrick went on to achieve a 100% record with the boot, converting six out of six attempts at goal.

Skipton drove the home side off the scrum in the next phase of play and put the resulting penalty into the corner. Knottingley were caught off-side again and Patrick slotted his second kick. Skipton had the majority of possession but an interception against the run of play put Knottingley clear for their opening try. The conversion attempt fell short.

Skipton came straight back from the re-start and a high tackle by the home side saw Skipton put the penalty kick into the corner. The ball was moved quickly across field from the line-out and good following up work by the forwards saw No. 8 Anthony Chapman over from the ruck for Skipton's first try. Patrick added the extra points.

Knottingley came close from the re-start but a line-out in the corner produced no points and Skipton cleared. The home side then received a yellow card for repeated off-side infringements and Skipton went into the break with a 13-5 lead.

Skipton Coach Carl Watts brought Lewis Reynoldson into the centre for the second-half to replace Miff Smith and Steve Carroll made a welcome return from injury to replace Harry Maltby in the forwards.

Skipton scrum-half Jake Emmison was tackled before the ball was out of the scrum and Patrick slotted his third penalty of the day to stretch the visitors' lead to 16-5.

Knottingley had no thoughts of giving in and came back at Skipton, maintaining useful possession to put pressure on the visitors' line and eventually going over in the corner for a second try. The conversion attempt hit the cross bar but bounced over and the game was very evenly placed at 16-12 in Skipton's favour.

Tom Creasey replaced Carl Nicholson in the Skipton pack and determined play, with tremendous forward runs from prop Damian Glaus, saw Skipton into the corner on Knottingley's line. 

Skipton opted for the scrum for two consecutive penalties, with second-row Brad Nicholson going over for a try from the second. Patrick added the extra points.

Skipton now had the bit between their teeth and gained a late penalty from a kick and chase for Knottingley holding on at the breakdown. They opted for the scrum again and skipper Hamish Munro was over for Skipton's third try from crash ball from the base of the scrum. Patrick added the extra points to round the day off with a 30-12 win for Skipton.