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Otley bid to restore pride after second-half savaging by Lions
Fifth-placed Otley have three reasons for wanting success on Saturday when they host third-placed Darling- ton Mowden Park.
“We lost 40-22 at Mowden Park in November, so we want to put that right, we also want to make up for a very disappointing second-half performance at Leicester Lions last Saturday and we want to cement our place in the top five,” said Otley’s director of rugby Ryan Duckett.
Otley were sitting pretty at half-time at Leicester Lions, leading 24-10 with the four-try bonus point already secured.
However, what happened after the interval was definitely more chalk than cheese, and they lost it 33-7 to head back to Yorkshire on the back of a 43-31 defeat.
Duckett said: “The first half was one of our best 40 minutes of the calendar year but the second half was the exact opposite – a case of extremes in conditions that were not different. There was no howling gale or anything like that.
“We just couldn’t get the ball and when we did we couldn’t keep it, although some decisions also went against us.”
Winger James Twomey (2), No 8 Rob Afoa-Peterson and flanker Johnathan Matthews crossed for Otley in the first half, scrum half Stephen Depledge getting their only five-pointer after the break as even a losing bonus point slipped away.
Twomey’s brace took his tally of league tries for the first team to 67, only seven shy of the club record of 74 set by Mark Kirkby, and Duckett said: “James is one of the best finishers in the business, and it was just a pity that we couldn’t get him over in the second half.”
Matthews’ try was his fourth in two games following his hat-trick against Luctonians, and Duckett said: “It gives us a real selection problem with Daniel Temm likely to be back from his knee injury.
“However, unfortunately we have again lost James Wood, who broke a finger in training.”
The former Huddersfield winger, who has just got back into the squad on recovering from a broken hand, had scored an impressive five tries in nine appearances before that mishap.
As for Mowden Park, Duckett said: “I have spoken to the rest of the coaching staff about when we met them earlier in the season and it is going to be a tough match.”