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Norman Angell’s comprehensive league round-up

Last Saturday our side were engaged in a Yorkshire local derby at Ilkley, a side that had beaten Lymm by 21-3 two weeks previously and were full of confidence to do the same to us. After an arm wrestle of a game played in pouring rain and on a very heavy pitch honours were even at the whistle with a 7-7 draw.
The result will have satisfied both clubs as neither deserved to lose and both had chances to win. Considering the condition it was a surprisingly good game to watch. Our points game from a well-deserved penalty try.
Elsewhere in the division, lowly Birkenhead Park posted only their third win of the season to defeat Wirral by 24-18, confirming Wirral’s very poor away form this season; in another close game at Kendal the home side beat Sandal 12-5 to halt Sandal’s recent mini-revival and in what must have been a cracking game, Kirkby Lonsdale had a tremendous 41-21 home win over fifth-placed Billingham, whose slender chance of a play-off place has now disappeared.
After their excellent showing against Preston Grasshoppers, Pocklington must have fancied their chances against visitors Lymm but the Cheshire boys posted an emphatic 42-7 victory; ‘Hoppers had a battle royal at home to Harrogate and after leading 17-3 at half-time they had to settle for a 24-17 victory. Finally, Rossendale had a 26-7 home win over lowly Morley but like Billingham they have missed the bus for a play-off place.
All this means that ‘Hoppers lead the table with 96 points, Harrogate remain second by virtue of the losing bonus point on 77 points over ourselves and Lymm move to third, level of 76 points with ourselves but with a scoring advantage of just seven points.
There is no change at the bottom. Pocklington are now relegated with just 13 points and Birkenhead Park and Morley are both on 22 points, 17 points behind Sandal and barring a miracle also relegated.
This week’s five catch-up games sees fifth placed Billingham take on eleventh placed Sandal; thirteenth placed Birkenhead take on sixth placed Rossendale; fourteenth placed ‘Gate take on bottom club Pocklington; tenth placed Ilkley entertain seventh placed Wirral and ninth placed Kirkby Lonsdale entertain ourselves. I can see home wins for Billingham, Harrogate and Ilkley and expect away wins for Rossendale and ourselves. I can also expect that some of these fixtures will again be cancelled if the weather forecast is anything to go by.
The ‘Beast from the East’ Mark Two is on the way!!
Norman Angell

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