CLECKHEATON opened their season in North One East with a 32-29 victory over last season’s runners up Scarborough.

The visitors kicked off playing into the wind and were soon on the back foot, when smart work by Jack Seddon sent him on a galloping run up the touchline. Scarborough infringed at the breakdown and Dale Breakwell slotted a 20-metre penalty.

He extended the lead to 6-0 with another 35-metre penalty five minutes later. Scarborough got their first try on 13 minutes when hooker Smyth forced his way over from close range for a converted score.

Cleckheaton played some breath-taking rugby in the next 20 minutes. Mike Hayward crossed for a try from a pinpoint kick from Dale Breakwell, who also converted.

Six minutes later Matt Piper ploughed across the line after good progress by Ryan Piercy and Breakwell converted again to make it 20-7.

From the restart Hayward crossed for his second try after a kick ahead was gathered by Olly Depledge, who gave the scoring pass. Breakwell maintained his perfect record with the boot to improve Cleck’s lead to 27-7.

In almost identical fashion, but this time with the ball in hand, Hayward turned provider, giving the final pass to full back Jack Marshall, who marked his league debut for the club with a fine try. Breakwell missed the kick but at half-time, Cleckheaton had already secured a bonus point, leaving Scarborough shell shocked and 32-7 in arrears.

The visitors started their fightback on 46 minutes with a close range effort by flanker Chris Purdy. Then prop Cutino got over the line and, with a quarter of the match remaining, Scarborough went in for their bonus point try as hooker Smyth crossed for his second.

The kick was missed once again but there were now just 10 points in it at 32-22.

With five minutes plus injury time remaining, Scarborough attempted a 35-metre penalty after Seddon was sin binned but that sailed to the right of the posts.

But they added a fifth try with the last play of the game that completed Smyth's hat-trick and earned the visitors a losing point.

This was a game of two halves, with Cleckheaton dominating the first half and then playing with a lack of patience in the second, which saw their share of time in possession drop dramatically.

This Saturday, Cleckheaton make the long trip to North Shields (2pm) to renew rivalry with Percy Park, who lost their opening game 25-14 at Bradford & Bingley.