Old Rishworthians shift focus to survival battle after cup exit at Westoe
Old Rishworthians go into another Yorkshire One local derby at Old Crossleyans as definite underdogs.
The Copley club will be eager to pull off a shock to help them climb out of the relegation zone.
They have put in some good performances against top-half clubs and will be hoping to do so again against Crocs, whose form has dipped after a very strong first half of the season.
Rishworthians were one of the few sides in action last weekend when they travelled to South Shields Westoe in the National Intermediate Cup.
Team manager Dan Ingham said: “We’re definitely looking forward to it. They are not quite as dominant as they were when they beat us at home at the beginning of November.
“Sometimes form goes out of the window in local derbies, so we will be hoping to come away with something.”
The steep slope and Westoe’s big strong running forwards were the key behind Rishworthians 45-17 defeat last weekend.
Despite the scoreline it was a fast-flowing game with both sides throwing the ball around at will.
The home side ran in three tries in the second quarter to put paid to Rishworthians hopes of gaining a result as they trailed 26-5 at the break.
The writing was on the wall for the away side when they were pushed back in an early scrum and the ball went out wide for a converted try to the home side.
The visitors fought back strongly though, with the experience of Anthony Shoesmith and Ed Cockroft shining through.
Shoesmith was in at the corner for the away side’s first try, after a great pick-up by Cockroft, to open Rishworthians’ account.
Westoe came back strongly down the slope, breaking through tackles to score another converted try and a forward charge soon after brought a further unconverted try.
Kelly was yellow carded for a deliberate knock-on as he went for an interception and the home side took advantage to run in a fourth try to end the half. Shoesmith and fullback Sam Bake
were almost in with a clever inter-passing move, but as Westoe came back a missed tackle saw them go in for another seven points.
Rishworthians lineout throws started to suffer as player coach Chris Stone had to go off with a hip injury.
They hit back, however, when Cockroft raced through, after a kick from Tom Andrews, to touch down in the corner.
Almost immediately after, Westoe extended their lead as the winger squeezed in at the corner for an unconverted try.
As the end-to-end play continued flanker Ethan Pollard picked up a loose ball and darted over. Kelly added the conversion.
Rishworthians were throwing the ball about as they chased the game, but a sloppy tip-on was intercepted to give Westoe their final converted try.