North Ribblesdale 27Pts Yarnbury 13Pts
Ribblesdale complete league double over Yarnbury.
Report by Andrew Mills
NORTH Ribblesdale did the double on Yarnbury by beating them 27-13 at Grove Park on Saturday.
Although it looked like an emphatic win for Ribb, the game was in the balance until the last 15 minutes.
Despite some efficient play by Yarnbury's backs, Ribb exhibited dominance in the scrum and were also better in the line-out, as three times they took crucial throws off attacking line-outs.
Matt Speres returned at centre, both stiffening the defence and making his trademarks gains in attack.
Ribb played with the wind in the first half and started well, securing the ball and keeping possession for most of the first 15 minutes.
They then got a penalty, which was duly popped over by Mick Thwaite.
Yarnbury then had a spell of possession, making the Ribb cover work hard with their slick back play. After 25 minutes, they got a result with a penalty for off-side.
Ribb came back hard, and after securing the kick-off they drove forward and forced a penalty, which Thwaite put in the corner.
The drive from the line-out was held up, but the resultant scrum surged over with Ray Fromm getting the touch down. The conversion by Thwaite made it 10-3 at half-time.
Yarnbury had the second half breeze at their back and used it well, keeping Ribb in their own half until a slick back move opened the Ribb defence for a converted try next to the posts to equal the score at 10 all.
The visitors tried to take control but were thwarted by Will Booth in the Ribb line-out.
Three times Yarnbury had penalties, putting the ball into the corner twice. Booth stole the ball and Fromm got the other one.
This and Ribb's scrum dominance meant Yarnbury only had sporadic ball.
Ribb took control and Booth forced himself over in the corner with an unconverted try to edge Ribb ahead at 15-10.
Yarnbury came back from the kick-off and got a penalty for off-side, which they converted to make it 15-13.
This was a narrow lead against the wind, but Ribb's scrum dominance saw them through although they needed a good steal from Booth to save them on their own line.
From this turnover, good driving play by Jonny Moore made space for Speres to burst over for a try out wide.
An excellent conversion from Thwaite put the score at 22-13.
Yarnbury did not collapse but lost their intensity and slack defence gave Moore the opportunity to go over for the final try and secure a bonus point.
This Saturday, Ribb travel to second from bottom Ripon.