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Battling Wyke push leaders hard
Wyke 10, Brotherton Bulldogs 42
Wyke ensured Division One leaders Brotherton Bulldogs knew they had been in a tough Pennine League game before the battling hosts slipped to defeat.
Wyke may now be without a win in their opening five matches but the scoreline certainly did not reflect the nature of a full-blooded contest.
Playing uphill, Wyke got off to the worst start possible when the Bulldogs scored with virtually their first attack.
A sweeping move down the right flank saw winger Alex Howson dive in at the corner, although the conversion was unsuccessful.
But Wyke rallied as hooker Ian Watkinson and veteran Simon Owen took the game to the visitors, who have won all five of their fixtures to date.
The home side were unlucky not to level things up on 17 minutes but Stevie Richardson’s neat grubber kick was hacked away by the Brotherton defence.
The Bulldogs then took a grip of the game when first hooker Nathan Waters scrambled over and then loose forward Steve Ramsey crashed in off a short ball.
With half-time approaching, Wyke again showed their character when a fine kick from scrum half Duane Platt was spilled by a defender, allowing Brett Grey to score.
But a penalty converted by the visitors left them with a 18-4 lead at the break.
The second half was littered with errors as the constant rain made handling extremely difficult. But the Bulldogs made the best of it and quickly extended their lead.
Waters made a break up the middle before kicking through for half-back Steve Hayes to touch down.
The Pontefract outfit were in again on 53 minutes when Waters found Hayes, who put the supporting Howson in the clear.
Wyke rallied again when the Bulldogs spilled the ball and Platt capitalised by stepping over the whitewash. Full back Jimmy Wain added the extras to make it 30-10.
Unfortunately there was to be no comeback as Howson rounded off the afternoon with a further two tries to extend his personal haul to four.