BRADFORD Salem picked up the five points needed to guarantee them safety in Yorkshire Division One thanks to a 33-27 win at home to Guisborough.

But they had to withstand a late fightback from plucky visitors who, at times, belied their position at the bottom.

In near perfect conditions at Shay Lane, Salem created a first scoring chance but winger Liam Barker dropped the ball over the line.

Guisborough then broke with a good run from left winger Lewis Robson, who was a constant threat. Only a last-ditch double tackle from Chris Clough and Jamie Symonds prevented the visitors from scoring.

The deadlock was broken after 22 minutes when Salem second rower Ben Whitaker, who had an outstanding game, brushed off several would-be tacklers on a 30-metre charge to the line. Right winger Jake Green added the conversion.

A strong run from No 8 Mike MacDonald straight from the restart got Salem back on the attack. After Nick Fontaine was denied, further pressure created enough space for veteran fly-half Richard Langhorn to canter over for a converted try.

Guisborough hit back almost immediately when a superb break from inside their own half was finished off by Robson to reduce the arrears to 14-5.

The visitors then suffered a blow when No 8 Michael Henderson was yellow carded for deliberately preventing a quick tap penalty. Salem capitalised as second rower Rhys Green broke through before off-loading to Fontaine. He out-paced the defence to score and Green improved to give the hosts a 21-5 advantage at the break.

Guisborough were the first team to add to their tally in the second half when second rower Richard Cahill drove over from a line-out.

It needed two desperate cover tackles from Langhorn and Sam Gardner to keep the away backs from further reducing the lead.

Salem launched an attack of their own and, after Rhys Green, Gundars Griekis and Will Collins had all been held up short of the line, scrum half Jamie Simpson dummied his way over to put Bradford 26-10 in front.

Then immediately from the restart strong runs from Whitaker and MacDonald sent Gardner on a 40-metre run to the line. Although the veteran centre was hauled down agonisingly short, he stretched out to score a try which Green improved to make it 33-10.

However, Guisborough refused to throw in the towel and, within minutes, a well-timed inside pass created a try for full-back Mark Ferguson.

More brilliant handling resulted in a try for winger Phil Shields which made it 33-20.

Guisborough threw everything at their opponents and when Ferguson squeezed over in the corner and Finken-Hayes landed a magnificent touchline conversion, an incredible comeback victory was a distinct possibility.

However, the visitors not only failed to collect the ball cleanly from the restart, they conceded a penalty which allowed a relieved Salem to close out victory.