WEST Bowling are still searching for their first National Conference League Premier Division win after promotion, after falling agonisingly short at home to Heworth on Saturday.

The club have found the going tough since winning the Division One title last year, with head coach Dean Muir leaving to take the hotseat at League 1 Hunslet.

John Williams’ first game in charge back in January was an excellent 34-22 Challenge Cup victory at Oulton Raiders.

But a fiery second-round encounter down in London at Hammersmith Hill Hoists saw Bowling beaten 32-10, and lose Liam Darville and Dan Halmshaw to lengthy bans after the pair picked up red cards for punching.

Both are back now and with second row Josh Lynam joining on dual registration from Keighley Cougars too, the Bradford side are becoming increasingly more competitive in the top-flight.

And they will have been devastated to lose at Horsfall at the weekend, going down 24-22 to make it five defeats from five.

With the sides level at 6-6 heading into the break, two quickfire tries from the hosts put them 14-6 in front.

Heworth responded to go 24-18 ahead, but a try for Bowling in the dying seconds gave them the opportunity to draw.

But the conversion attempt was missed, and the home side’s wait for a first point of the season goes on.

Winger Kian Cockshott crossed twice for Bowling, while his team-mates Lewis Camden, Elliott Cousins and Logan Simpson helped themselves to a try apiece.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Former Bulls youngster and current West Bowling full back Lewis Camden was on the scoresheet on Saturday.Former Bulls youngster and current West Bowling full back Lewis Camden was on the scoresheet on Saturday. (Image: Bradford Bulls.)

Liam Coe added one conversion to the home side's total.

Stanningley won their third game out of six in Division One this season, beating visitors Skirlaugh 27-12.

Drighlington did not play in Division Three, meaning they lost their place at the summit to Distington.

In the opening round of Yorkshire Men’s League fixtures at the weekend, Keighley Albion started their Premier Division campaign with a last-gasp 22-16 win at King Cross Park.

Newly-promoted Bradford Dudley Hill won their Division One opener, edging out visiting Milford 20-12.

A low-scoring thriller in Division Two saw Brighouse Rangers beat hosts Queensbury 14-12.

In the YML Shield, Guiseley Rangers were knocked out after losing 42-24 to Bramley Buffaloes A.

Finally, in the NCL Alliance League, West Bowling’s Academy recorded a 24-0 win over Bentley.