OTLEY’S director of rugby Peter Clegg was more pleased than disappointed by their 52-27 defeat at home to Caldy last weekend in National League Two North.

The Cross Greeners turned a 24-10 half-time deficit into a 27-24 lead with 15 minutes left before conceding four converted tries in nine minutes against a team who had not lost in 18 matches.

Clegg said: “We are going through a sticky patch at the moment with injuries and ended up with two wing forwards in the centre and Jack Macie at ten but I was delighted with the effort of the players to turn things around after half-time before we imploded. “

Mackie became the latest Otley player to reach 100 league appearances, and Clegg said: “I am delighted for him, we are delighted for him, he is 100 per cent Otley, wears his heart on his sleeve and would play prop if we asked him to.”

Tenth-placed Otley are expecting to have centre or fly half James White available for the trip to basement boys Preston Grasshoppers.

CLECKHEATON’S Scott Benton reckons the lack of a goal-kicker has cost his team 15 to 20 league points in National League Three North this season.

The former England international scrum half said that last weekend’s 19-17 defeat at home to second-placed Rossendale was a case in point, but also reckoned that they didn’t get the rub of the green via referee Peter Stentiford’s interpretation of the new high-tackle mandate.

Benton added: “Those decisions can be game-changers but I am really pleased with how we played against Rossendale and we had chances to win it.”

Cleckheaton, who make the short trip to Sandal, will be without left winger Ollie Depledge, who is set to be out for two years due to anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction, but have Danny Vento returning to the back row.

Eighth-placed BRADFORD SALEM have opted to start their Yorkshire Division One match at home to tenth-placed Heath with Conor Wood at prop.

He is normally a flanker or centre but Salem’s chairman Neil Klenk explained: "He has played at prop as a junior, we also name him as a front-row replacement and he has played there during a game due to injuries. Also he is one of the strongest players in the team."

Jack Mitchell's return at scrum half means that Matt Booth switches to fly half and skipper Andy Robinson to centre.

Kodie Brook is on the wing for the unavailable Ryan Smith.

Keighley, who are sixth and lost a competitive match at home to second-placed West Leeds last weekend, host bottom-of-the-table North Ribblesdale in another derby. 

Bradford Salem (home to Heath): D Belcher; K Brook, H Hall, A Robinson, N Fontaine; M Booth, J Mitchell; J Bradbury, A Veitch, C Wood, J Cunliffe, R Green, J Booth, C Baines, C Manchester. Replacements: J Abram, J Morrell, T O'Sullivan.