Yorkshire Men's League 40/20 Cup: Heworth 14 Keighley Albion 6

WITH the previous weekend’s games all called off due to the snow, this was Keighley Albion’s first game of the season against tough opponents Heworth in York.

Both teams will be battling it out in Yorkshire League Division One this campaign so it was a good taste of what lies in front of them.

Heworth’s ground was water-logged following recent snow and rain, so the game was moved to a sports centre where the pitch, while still a mud bath, was playable.

The game started at a fast pace with both teams throwing everything at each other. Defences held strong for 30 minutes before Heworth broke the deadlock. Moving the ball out wide to the left, they found an overlap to score in the corner.

Albion didn’t recover quick enough from this try and some lazy defence and missed tackles saw Heworth on the score sheet once more to lead 12-0 at the break.

The second half started with Albion pinning Heworth back in their own half. Half-backs Connor Meegan and Dan Connell tried to break Heworth’s defence down with some great ball work and strong running from props Jack Kennedy and Joe Preston - but they could not breach the line.

Despite attack after attack, and with big Morgan Robinson causing no end of trouble, Heworth’s defence held strong.

Finally Albion got on the scoresheet with Owen Palmer bagging his first of the season and Fin Meegan adding the kick to reduce the deficit to 12-6.

Some silly penalties carried Heworth down field into the Albion half and frustration saw the visitors give a penalty away in front of the sticks. Heworth added the two points which meant Keighley had to score twice.

Albion tried their utmost to get another try but they couldn’t find that killer pass as the boggy conditions took their toll.

Both Albion coaches Andy Stokes and John Gwillam were pleased with the effort put in by all the team.

Set completion and set plays were carried out to a very high percentage. There is still a lot to work on in training but this was a solid start first up.

Man of the match Joe Preston ran his socks off all day along with Jack Kennedy and Robinson.

Harry Normington enjoyed his first team debut along with Connell, while Olek Pala and Connor Murphy were outstanding in defence.