WITH both teams level on 28 points, the Yorkshire Two clash at Cross Green between hosts Old Grovians and North Ribblesdale was always likely to be decided by slim margins.

And the pivotal moment, in the 57th minute, was indeed a knife-edge decision.

The home side broke away from near their own 22 in an expansive move that ended with full back Max Kennedy going over for a try that would have put Grovians 22-13 ahead with the kick to come.

However, referee Graham Rackstraw called play back to the North Ribblesdale 22 for a forward pass.

“It didn’t look forward to me,” said Kennedy. “But I am biased. I thought that it was flat.

“However, we cannot blame the referee, we cannot blame whatever. We had the wind in the second half and we had control and we should have won. It was our fault that we lost.

“We panicked. We still had 10 minutes left and they were a man down, and if you play the phases, you score and you will win, but all this comes with experience so that you know for next time and you will win.

“We tried to play open, expansive rugby but Ribb did a good job of slowing us down, and the longer that it carried on not working you just get more and more frustrated.

“We are such a young team that we miss the likes of Ben Brown and his experience just to calm us down, so being a young team has its pros and cons.”

Old Grovians’ philosophy of running North Ribb around was soon in evidence in a battle of fourth-from-bottom hosts against third-from-bottom visitors, but Ribb went into a 6-0 lead courtesy of two penalties by fly half Michael Thwaite in the 17th and 28th minutes.

That advantage only lasted three minutes, as a superb pass by centre Ed Brown put Kennedy over for centre Jake Bentley to add the conversion.

And in first-half stoppage time, flanker Ed King scored from a pass by fly half Matt Sheard, with Bentley’s conversion attempt spiralling against the far post and bouncing out.

But the second half was only four minutes old when Ribb went back in front at 13-12 as Thwaite plunged over before adding the conversion himself.

However, in the 54th minute, Grovians No. 8 Ollie Parton broke down the left and gave an inside pass to try-scoring flanker Joe Pearson.

Leading 17-13, Kennedy’s disallowed try came three minutes later and instead, the visitors hit back in the 64th minute when scrum half Jack McLeod nipped round the blindside to score a try which Thwaite converted.

The latter missed a penalty six minutes later before being sin-binned for a high tackle but, in a feisty ending, Grovians could not mount a decisive attack to snatch the win.

Ribb have swapped places with Grovians and are now three points better off than their hosts, who got a losing bonus point, but both teams have a game in hand on six of their divisional rivals.

The only other Bradford side to play on Saturday were Baildon, who lost 28-19 at Northallerton in Yorkshire Two.

Halifax Vandals were awarded an away walkover win at Wibsey in Yorkshire Three.

The game would have been postponed anyway due to Bradford Council closing all their grass pitches for the weekend, but Wibsey had already rung up their visitors and told them they would be unable to raise a side.