Crunch last day for local pair

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This season’s last round of Yorkshire League rugby union fixtures take place on Saturday and the stakes are high for Halifax Vandals and Old Crossleyans.

Vandals have booked their ticket to Yorkshire Two and go to Castleford needing a bonus-point win to be sure of the title.

Goole, who host Baildon, are only one point behind.

Jamie Bloem’s Warley side need to win and score four tries against foes they beat 22-12 in the first game of the season.

Crocs face a third successive relegation after they slipped into Yorkshire Two’s bottom two 13 days ago when they lost at Roundhegians and Leodiensian won at Ripon. They have a four-point gap to bridge.

Club spokesman Howard Cooper said: “We are trying to remain positive going into the final match at home to Pontefract despite knowing that our fate is out of our hands.

“We are hoping that Old Grovians can do the unexpected and gain a victory at Leodensians whilst ensuring that we beat Pontefract and gain a try bonus point at the same time.

“Our performances in the latter half of the season have improved, but there has been occasions when we looked capable of winning for an hour or more only to lose out late on.

“The damage was done at the outset when several players left us, plus two expected signings gave backward.

“I firmly believe that we wouldn’t be in this position if we’d had the side which has taken the field since the turn of the year at an earlier stage.

“Whatever Saturday’s outcome we hope to announce the signing of a player coach very soon and are excited about this.”

Ollie Coyne (illness) is a doubt but lock Troy Frisch hopes to return from injury. The back line is unchanged from the Roundhegians game.