BRADFORD Salem may have made it seven wins on the trot in Counties One Yorkshire with a 52-10 home win over Bradford & Bingley.

However, the third-placed club, just seven points off the summit with a game in hand, are not getting ahead of themselves as they pursue promotion.

Salem's attack coach Andy Robinson, who was one of their more influential players against the Bees, said: “I know that is a cliche, but we will just take it one game at a time.

"We have a tough fixture at Wensleydale next week and we will see where we finish at the end of the season.

“We have been practising our patterns in training and every week it is getting a little bit better, all the lads are buying into it and we are getting more clinical.

“Our defence has been really strong throughout the season.

"Bob (head coach Hood) and myself really needed to address our structure, but the lads listen and they are very coachable and take things on board.”

Salem ran in eight tries, and Robinson added: “It was a good team performance, but our last try from Josh Charnock, who showed that turn of speed, was absolutely superb.

“Even though we got two yellow cards for infringements at the ruck, our discipline has been getting better, but this was a derby game and these things happen.”

Robinson added: “We are getting over the gain line more easily and we started the game well here and camped inside their 10-metre line for a good period and it was only a matter of time before the first try came.

“I would give us eight out of 10 for our first half but in the second half for the first 20 minutes we were trying to push it too hard, but then we got back to the game-plan, which was a good sign.

“However, credit to Bradford & Bingley. They were dogged, they never gave up and are fighting for safety.”

A minute’s silence was observed in memory for former Bingley, Bradford & Bradford & Bingley prop Peter Rae before kick-off, and Salem started off defending the Heaton Woods end.

However, the action, in front of an excellent crowd, was at the other end of the field with Salem gaining the first three penalties and Morgan Mirzaali blowing a golden opportunity in the 10th minute.

Running straight would have brought the Salem flanker a try, but in trying to cut diagonally towards the posts he lost his footing and the chance was gone.

However, the hosts scored close-range tries from prop Conor Wood and lock Ben Whitaker in the 12th and 20th minutes, Jake Green converting the first and hitting the near post with the second.

Between those scores, Bees fly half Will Marshall had missed an eminently kickable penalty, and his side were soon 26-0 behind as hooker James Brown and Wood secured the four-try bonus point with tries in the 25th and 29th minutes, both of which were converted by the in-form Green.

Bradford & Bingley at least got on the board when centre Jason Maranka ran a nice line to score a try in stoppage time, scrum half Dom Walker missing the kickable conversion.

But there was still time for left winger Aaron Magee to get Salem’s fifth try after a Robinson break, several players on both sides being involved in a melee instead of being concerned with what was going on in open play.

The second half was scrappier, with Salem being unable to take advantage of a Robinson interception and a Suaia Matagi break.

Salem No.8 Tom Cummins was sin-binned in the 51st minute, but the visitors could not take advantage, as replacement Danny Belcher scored on the hour mark for Salem via quick hands, despite the hosts being a man down.

Green’s excellent conversion made it 40-5 before Salem skipper Christian Baines was yellow carded in the 65th minute and this time the Bees did cash in, with a try down the left wing for Connor Capper.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Christian Baines was sin-binned in a fiery affair, but losing their skipper did not affect Salem too badly.Christian Baines was sin-binned in a fiery affair, but losing their skipper did not affect Salem too badly. (Image: JT Sports Media.)

However, Salem finished strongly with tries for Mirzaali and that aforementioned effort from spring-heeled full back Charnock.

Green completed the scoring, and a good day with the boot, with another successful conversion from wide out.

Leaders Keighley maintained top spot, as an excellent first-half display saw them win 32-19 at mid-Wensleydale, but neighbours Salem could close to within two points of them if they win their game in hand this coming weekend.

In Counties Two Yorkshire, Baildon suffered a crushing defeat in the title race, losing 39-5 at home to leaders North Ribblesdale to drop back to 10 points off the summit.

The defeat leaves them in fourth but they still have at least one game in hand on all three of the sides above them.

Finally, in Regional One North East, Cleckheaton sit just three points off the bottom, putting in a battling effort at high-flying Alnwick, but eventually losing 35-21.