Gordon’s late drop-goal proves ideal tonic for Cleck

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Cleckheaton 15

Keighley 13

A LATE drop-goal by Iain Gordon netted Cleckheaton four North One East points despite an indifferent performance against Keighley.

Groundsman Paul Hemingway deserves huge credit for getting the game on but Cleck looked rusty early on and both teams missed early penalty attempts.

Keighley had captain Leigh Sugden sin-binned before Cleck’s own skipper Richard Piper led a 15 metre driving maul and plunged over for the try, which Gordon converted.

Keighley responded with two penalties as an uneventful first half ended 7-6.

Paul Rossi was sin-binned early in the second half for the visitors and it was captain Richard Piper who cemented a man-of-the-match performance with another try from a driving maul.

Keighley, back to a full compliment, piled on the pressure, which resulted in Paul Turner and Jack Bickerdike both receiving yellow cards for Cleck in quick succession.

The 13-men of Cleckheaton looked to be holding out but with two minutes left on the sin-bins, Sugden went over for a converted try to put the visitors 13-12 up.

Cleckheaton battled back and having drove the ball up the centre of the field, Gordon was on hand to slot over a 30-metre drop-goal and the final whistle was greeted with cheers of relief from the Moorend faithful, although they will need to play better if they are to return from Sheffield with the points this week.

n Cleckheaton Kestrels moved top of the Yorkshire Merit Championship with a 38-5 win over Keighley Seconds.

Manager Bob Wilson and coach Gordon Piper deserve credit as the Kestrels have only lost once so far this season.

n Cleckheaton Under-10s returned to winning ways, beating Keighley 12-1.

George Gilgrass scored six tries, Marcus Abbott bagged a first hat-trick and earned the champagne moment for a storming run to the line, while Ruby Enright, Felix Hampshire and Dan Crawshaw also scored.

n The Under-13s suffered their first defeat of the season to Dinnington.

The Yorkshire Cup quarter-finalists were left stunned as Dinnington raced into a shock 17-0 half-time lead and although Cleck fought back bravely, with Cieran Lewis scoring twice, both converted by Dominic Howarth, they slipped to a 17-14 defeat.

MoM was Drew Judge Clark.