New Brighton 13

Kirkby Lonsdale 22

KIRKBY Lonsdale got the job done at a side fighting for their North One West survival.

In what was a must win game for both sides for different reasons, promotion-chasing Kirkby overcame early setbacks against their relegation threatened hosts to record a 19th win of the season.

As expected, New Brighton came out hard and fast and scored the game's opening try after just 90 seconds.

Kirkby weren't helped by the early departures of centre pairing, Jack Akrigg and then Tom Pickthall after they each picked up heavy knocks in the first half and had to rejig their midfield.

Pickthall though, had made some contributions before his early exit, kicking a Kirkby penalty and converting the visitors first try of the afternoon.

Kirkby weathered the early storm and applied pressure of their own and scored their opening try.

Opting for a scrum when another penalty was offered, number eight Craig Galbraith picked up made ground and fed scrum half Ben Walker who made more ground then passed to stand off Dave Barton who angled a run and broke through the defence to score.

Pickthall was again on target with the conversion and Kirkby took a 10-5 lead.

New Brighton were having their chances but were put to the sword with probably the move of the match.

After recycling at pace with the ball moving through many pairs of hands, prop Jonas Thorsen made a beautiful slip pass in the tackle to Barton powered through to score his second try.

The home side continued to press but Kirkby held firm until the break even when flanker David Cooper-Dunn picked up a yellow card.

It was a very difficult second half for a reshuffled Kirkby side which saw Chris Ramwell and David Bird in the centre with winger Martyn Knapton dropping to full back.

New Brighton narrowed the gap to 15-8 with a penalty as Kirkby hung grimly on through the third quarter and they needed the decisive score - and it came in a very unusual fashion.

Walker, whose tries usually come from pace and skilful running, found himself lying face down just over the try line when the ball flew out of a ruck, bounced off the post in his direction where he promptly applied downward pressure on the ball and the referee awarded the try.

New Brighton's efforts were rewarded with a second try but Kirkby failed to add a bonus fourth try which could prove crucial come the end of the season.