Yorkshire Division Three: Thornensians 38 Baildon 0

SOME Baildon stalwarts pulled on a jersey to cover for absent colleagues at strong opponents Thornensians in what was appalling weather.

For example, Phil Wilson played for 80 minutes, while fellow veteran Nick Murphy stepped into the front row.

Jamie Mitchell, who hadn't played for 18 months, also came into the front row, while Sam Thompson put his body on the line alongside fellow prop Adam Hewitt, who was a robust leader.

Early opportunities fell to the visitors in the Brian Hawkins Memorial Trophy clash as Dan Fletcher had a kick and chase on spilled Thornensians ball, Tom Cluett won a turnover and launched a great counter attack, and Luke Strauss and Matt Wilson almost bagged tries.

Thompson took a nasty blow to the back but somehow managed to give up his sizeable shirt to replacement Murphy.

However, although Baildon's line-out functioned, they creaked at the scrums and conceded a pushover try, but that was the only score of the first half as the rain sheeted down.

Mitchell came off injured in the second half and Hewitt was sin-binned for tackling after he had failed to retreat the requisite ten metres, leading to uncontested scrums.

Even worse, Murphy was then, mystifyingly to most, dismissed for striking an opponent, and Baildon, down to 13 men, capitulated.

Most annoying of all was the penalty try award, given for an obstruction on the say-so of the Thornensians touch judge as the referee was 40 yards behind play.

However, it was credit to Baildon and their players – they handed debuts to Oli Murphy and Jake Ruff – that they never questioned the referee, kept enjoying their rugby and kept tackling