Kirkby slip to defeat in treacherous conditions at Underley Park

Kirkby Lonsdale 5

Leigh 15

North One West

KIRKBY Lonsdale were narrowly defeated on a slippy surface at Underley Park.

The conditions were demonstrated from the off when Leigh’s drop out slid off the side of the boot and didn't go 10 yards.

Kirkby won the resultant scrum, took play into opposition territory and maintained field position and possession until there was a handling mistake. Leigh swept down the field and only last ditch tackling prevented a try.

The visitors did put the first points on the board though when Kirkby went offside in defence and their full back Ryan slotted the kick.

The treacherous conditions underfoot caused Kirkby problems as they were going forward and when they gave the ball away Tosh Shepherd got injured as the home side tried to defend.

Leigh were held up when they drove over but shortly afterwards their burly number eight Compton did get over for a try, the conversion extending Leigh's lead to 10-0.

The second half continued where the first half left off as Kirkby pressed for a score but errors came at crucial moments.

As play ebbed and flowed Leigh had decent ball in the Kirkby half and were able to create space for their full back Ryan to score by the left corner flag, the unconverted try stretching their lead to 15-0.

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A three-score margin midway through the second half began to look like a winning position until the promising young Kirkby winger Josh Maddock took a pass from Jack Akrigg and got on the scoresheet with a well-taken try in the left corner.

Liam Cleary's conversion attempt from the touchline missed by a whisker but Kirkby were on the scoreboard to reduce the deficit to 15-5.

Kirkby's efforts to add to their score were met with stout resistance from Leigh, who were particularly effective at rucks to deny Kirkby the quick ball they needed, although over-enthusiasm earned Leigh number four Penn 10 minutes in the sinbin for a technical offence.

With the extra man advantage Kirkby needed possession and to take the ball through a few phases but instead they kicked it away to Leigh who, gratefully, stuck it up their jumpers for five or six minutes and the opportunity was gone.

As the game progressed Josh Pewsey and Beltran Orrega Luca ran on to beautifully flighted kicks from Cleary and, catching on the run, made a couple of decisive breaks but what would have been scoring passes fell into the error count and didn't go to hands.

With the clock ticking Kirkby were awarded a penalty 30 metres out but Cleary struck the left upright and the ball bounced back into Leigh hands as the away side clung on to victory.

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