KIRKBY Lonsdale travelled up to the North East knowing full well what lay ahead of them.

Blaydon are a club now looking to return to where they came from in National (North 2) and having been helped on their way by Kirkby’s victory over Harrogate and then over Billingham and Wirral in the last three weeks.

Blaydon's promotion may well involve a play off and that could come down to points difference with their Yorkshire rivals, Harrogate). This meant that they were not going to take their foot off the pedal against Kirkby.

They produced a superb display of fast running rugby for their 52-0 result. Territory and possession was almost totally dominated by Blaydon, with only one period in each half when Kirkby managed to put together sustained phases of attack and pressure on Blaydon’s line.

Disregard this score line, this was a very spirited performance by a very much under-strength Kirkby side with more than a smattering of players from the development squad and a second row forward playing at scrum half.

Number eight Alex Rodgers was captain on the day and all the players took their chance well on Blaydon’s new artificial surface.

A measure of Kirkby’s quality and resilience was shown in that a fired-up Blaydon led only 19 -0 at half time. But the screw turned in the second half with the home side running in three tries in the first 10 minutes and two more later on to take their score past 50 and maintain their play off place, one point ahead of Harrogate.

A slight downside for Kirkby was that the young winger Harry Huddleston was carried off with suspected sprained ligaments. Hopefully he will be fit for the final league game next week.

Standing out and very busy for Kirkby was Jos Sheridan (No 6) and for Blaydon was also their No 6 Rob Lenderyou, who was their 'man of the match'. There was also a fine performance from Blaydon's captain at No8 Keith Laughlin.

Thoughts now turn to the last match of the season at Underley Park next Saturday (kick-off 3pm) in what should be a cracking celebration of a successful season, with Kirkby’s finale against Wilmslow.

l Kirkby 1st XV physio Christie Byrne has recently achieved Care In Sport Level 3, the highest level achievable in the RFU.