Halifax fold in second half

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Halifax RUFC’s recent resurgence was brought to an abrupt halt by an Old Otliensians side who beat them 60-5 in Yorkshire Three.

The Ovenden Park men had travelled in hope after two wins in the previous three weeks but they were found wanting.

They were not helped by the unavailability of half a dozen influential players but that may not have influenced the result greatly.

Halifax made a bright start at Otley, driving hard at the home line but showing a reluctance to open play out.

Otliensians, a powerful side, took the initial battering and the danger signal went up when they stole the ball and made 70 metres, Chris Dennison crossing from the left wing to the right to make an impressive tackle.

That relief did not last long as Otliensians won an attacking scrum on the right and the No 8 powered over.

Halifax were not playing badly, particularly in close forward play, but dropped the ball when they had a chance to score.

Fluent home three quarter play and poor Halifax tackling meant Otliensians’ lead was stretched to 17 points.

The persistence of the driving Halifax forwards was eventually rewarded when strong young prop Jack Pilcher scored after 33 minutes.

Five minutes later Halifax appeared to have crossed the line again but he referee ruled that the ball had been grounded short.

The second half was painful for Halifax as their resolve evaporated with a catalogue of missed tackles, dropped balls, penalties conceded, lack of awareness and attention at quick free kicks and a rising tide of Otliensians confidence.

The score mounted and although Halifax rallied in the last five minutes they were distraught by the measure of the second half collapse.