Crocs in critical situation

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Old Crossleyans appear to need at least one win from three tough remaining fixtures to have a chance of avoiding a second successive relegation.

The Broomfield men fell five points behind third-from-bottom Selby in Yorkshire One yesterday.

They lost 41-14 away to table toppers Bradford and Bingley while Selby won 12-8 at bottom side West Park Leeds.

With games against Hullensians, York and Old Brodleians to come, they are going to need a special effort.

Crocs were far from disgraced yesterday, trailing only 15-7 at half time before the Wagon Lane side stretched into a 34-7 lead after 51 minutes.

In the absence of Zane Sanders, Luke Saltonstall partnered the returning Chris Seymour in the centre and the Sweeney brothers, Gareth and Ryan, filled the wing berths. Jack Hammond was at stand off.

After a scoreless first 15 minutes, visiting fullback Chris Vine was unable to hang on to the ball from Gareth Sweeney’s kick almost on the try line.

However, the visitors did take the lead when Bees failed to retain possession following a scrum near their own line and the experienced Seymour stepped inside the cover to score and Ryan Sweeney converted.

Crocs came under the cosh. Home stand off Shaun Driver pulled back three points with a penalty and pressure close to the visitors’ line led to James Wainwright being sin-binned and Bees being awarded a penalty try converted by Driver.

Prop Roger Raper added another five points for the home side on 36 minutes but Crocs finished the half on the attack with a big drive from No 8 Matt Thorburn.

Bees stepped up a gear after the break and tries from winger Brett Mitchell, centre Taylor Fiddes and flanker Matthew Cochrane, plus two Driver conversions, left Crocs 34-7 down and staring at a heavy defeat.

However, following a long restart they won back the ball. Seymour went close and the ball was eventually spread with long passes and Gareth Sweeney sent his brother in at the corner, Ryan converting on 62 minutes.

A Gareth Sweeney interception broke up a Bees attack but Vine passed to an opponent.

Hammond and a Bees player were sin binned after a late fracas and the home side had the final word through prop Ryan Wederell with Driver converting.