Yarnbury 14 Wetherby 22

THE absence of key forwards proved too big a handicap for Yarnbury as they suffered only their second defeat of the season.

The result enabled Barnsley to leap-frog over them into second place in the scramble for promotion.

The powerful Wetherby pack took full advantage of their greater poundage and Yarnbury were further handicapped by having to play the match on the narrow training pitch.

After weathering early pressure, Yarnbury took the lead after ten minutes when captain Jason Avison received the ball on the switch and broke the defence before putting left winger Jack Brown in for the first try which was well converted by stand-off Danny Pound.

Yarnbury repeated the dose on the 20th minute with exactly the same move in midfield and all Avison had to do with space was slow down for winger Brown to collect the pass and touch down. Pound narrowly missed the conversion.

Yarnbury defended well for the rest of the half as they played down the slope and against the wind.

Wetherby kicked two penalties dead and missed a shot at goal before turning round 14-0 down.

But the home side suffered a setback when they lost Avison five minutes before half-time to the sin-bin for a high tackle and this sparked a Wetherby comeback straight after the turn around around.

Yarnbury’s young forwards may have been small in comparison to their opponents but Tom Warriner, Reece Leighton and George Bowen worked tirelessly in defence taking the knocks in the tackle.

Wetherby finally opened their account when Yarnbury lost the ball and the big Wetherby forwards gave substitute scrum half John Day the chance to slip the covering defence to reach the line. Captain Dan Wardman converted.

Maybe the long punt down the field to play in the Wetherby 22 was what the coaches wanted but this played into the hands of visitors.

Their backs were making good distance down the right side of the field and got a second try after 60 minutes when centre Myles Oates squeezed through a gap to score an unconverted try.

Yarnbury succumbed to a third Wetherby try when substitute forward Andrew Tropman went over with Warden adding the extras.

The hosts mounted a determined attack and got prop Lewis Atha away in the right corner for what looked a certain try, but he was stopped short and Jack Brown on the wing had nowhere to go and was bundled into touch.

A final penalty for a scrum offence saw Wetherby close out the game and deny Yarnbury the losing bonus point.