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Bees injuries show weaknesses in the backs
Lymm 38, Bradford & Bingley 17
Bradford & Bingley's poor away form continued with a disappointing SSE National League Three North defeat at Lymm, who the Bees had utterly dominated in the reverse fixture earlier in the season.
The visitors lack strength in depth in their back division, and once they lost Ben Greaves and Tom Kanouros to injuries, the home side were able to stretch the Bees defence beyond breaking point and gallop away with the game after the break.
Lymm took a slender 13-12 half-time advantage to cruise to a dominant 38-12 lead. Right at the death, the Bees showed some defiance as skipper Guy Ford barged over from short range to claim his second of the day and 19th five-pointer of the season, even though he had been employed as a makeshift centre after Greaves left the paddock.
The dominance of the Bees pack was evident early in the game, and while they were able to field a full back line, the slick handling and greater pace of the home three-quarters was counter-balanced by the visitors' performance up front.
After Lymm had taken a 6-0 lead through two penalties, Martyn Mitchell was able to hack through onto a loose ball and pull his side within a point.
The home side only took five minutes to stretch their lead to eight points as they claimed a converted score but as the half wore down, Ford was on hand to burrow over and pull his men to within a point once more.
Straight after the break, another Lymm penalty pushed the home side four points clear and then the Bees were architects of their own undoing as an attempted clearance kick was charged down and returned with interest, pushing Lymm 21-12 in front.
The home side had by now realised that they could break the Bees defensive line simply by putting the ball through the hands quicker than the improvised visiting defence could give chase, and two quick five-pointers and another penalty left any hopes of any points being taken back to Wagon Lane in tatters.
The Bees visit Harrogate next week and then host Birkenhead Park, the team immediately below them in the table and the only side in the relegation places with any possible chance of catching the men from Wagon Lane.