Eight-try Siddal sink Skirlaugh

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Siddal notched the first win of their National Conference League title defence with a comprehensive 48-12 home success over Skirlaugh.

The Chevinedge side, whose opener at Pilkington Recs seven days earlier had been abandoned in the first half when a home player was injured, ran away with yesterday’s contest after leading 18-6 at half time.

The match was very disjointed, with a huge amount of penalties awarded against both sides by the French referee, several against Siddal when they played the ball.

Gareth Greenwood’s side scored eight tries, two of them from winger Gareth Blackburn, who added all eight conversions.

Siddal shot into an early 18 point lead with tries from Byron Smith, Ben West and Sean McCormick, the Humbersiders replying with a converted try following a grubber kick as the interval approached.

The champions powered clear with Blackburn’s brace, one of them coming from Shaun Garrod excellent long pass and the other a long-range effort in which he stepped the full back.

Freddie Walker and Tom Garrett put more daylight between the teams and George Ambler supported a Garrod break to get Siddal’s final try.

Skirlaugh completed the scoring with a converted try in the last five minutes.

Prop Iain Davies was the home man of the match while loose forward Smith caught the eye and ex-Halifax player Anthony Bowman, shortly to go to Australia, was solid at centre on his debut.

Siddal coach Gareth Greenwood said: “We were not anywhere near where I want us to be but we still won very comfortably.”

Siddal can expect a stern test away to Rochdale Mayfield, edged out 18-14 at West Hull yesterday, in a game switched to next Friday evening (7.30).

Siddal seconds completed a good day for the club with a 34-18 win at Ovenden in the semi-finals of the Halifax ARL’s Joseph Fee Memorial Trophy.

Their final opponents will be Boothtown Terriers, who beat visitors Brighouse Rangers 32-28.