KIRKBY Lonsdale RUFC began life in the Northern Premier Division with a convincing 34-12 win over Birkenhead Park, much to the delight of captain Ben Walker.

The Underley Park side have seemingly picked up from where they left off last season in the win on Merseyside, as they play at the club's highest ever level following their 100 per cent winning campaign last time around.

"It was a really good start," said Walker. "We're happy with how it went and hopefully we can just carry on building on last year."

Two new faces have joined the Kirkby ranks and both performed admirably on their debuts. Gareth Gore has joined and will bolster the second row, while outside centre Scott Armstrong scored a debut try.

Kirkby play their first home game at Underley Park, where they are unbeaten in league matches since 2013, against local rivals Kendal.

Walker said that given the early meeting in the season, there should be less pressure than their last encounter which settled a North One West title in 2016.

"It's actually quite nice not to have too much riding on it," he said. "This could be a bit more free flowing as there's less pressure and both teams will be able to try things a bit more.

"As soon as the fixture list came out the clubhouse was booked out and it's looking like we'll be hosting about 1500 people so it should be a brilliant occasion."