Old Otliensians 20 Old Modernians 17
This Yorkshire Silver Trophy match was originally postponed as neighbours Modernians were due play a re-arranged league match, but when their pitch was deemed to be still waterlogged, the game was back on.
It provided the unbeaten Yorkshire Division Four leaders with the chance to claim the scalp of a Modernians side that is currently third in the division above them.
Otliensians started tentatively and, if anything, afforded the opposition too much respect. The game was very close throughout with the lead changing twice before winger Declan Jackson scored a last-minute try to pull off a fine victory.
With a stiff breeze and the ground underfoot soft, the home side used the conditions to move the ball wide through half backs Rob Lofthouse and Luke Freer.
They soon discovered that the taller opposition pack had impressive line-out techniques and their catch and drive policy paid off with a converted try which gave them a 7-0 lead.
It was a different story in the scrums where the front row of Tony Myers, Jim Dyson and Ross Nichols took control and provided a steady supply of ball to their backs.
The home centres Nathan Rogers and Dom Oddy always threatened and when the ball was whipped out to winger Luke Cowdell, he slid through a gap and then outpaced the opposition cover to score a fine try wide out.
Just before the break pressure from the home side paid off. Modernians infringed and Kristian Keinhorst landed the penalty to give the hosts an 8-7 lead.
Despite being against the wind in the second half Otliensians were soon back in the attack and slick inter-passing among their backs put centre Nathan Rogers over for a 45th minute try which Ben Hatton converted.
Home prop Nichols had some strong runs, but Mods came back strongly with their powerful pack dominating the line-outs and when an Otliensians clearance kick blew backwards, the visitors took full advantage and went over for a converted try to narrow the gap to 15-14.
Otliensians’ defensive cause was not helped when they had a player sin-binned for a late tackle after 70 minutes.
With the home side a man down, Mods continued to dominate play and received their reward when they kicked a penalty to take the lead.
Yhe hosts didn’t panic and set about working the ball upfield through good interplay between forwards and backs.
The opportunity presented itself when winger Jackson received the ball in space near halfway and raced away leaving the cover in his wake his pace taking him comfortably round the full back to score in the corner.
Otliensians’ reward for their last-gasp victory is anpther home tie in the next round against Rotherham Phoenix or Stocksbridge on Saturday, February 22.