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Local rugby league: Youth grabs its chance, but ultimately Beverley fall short

DUDLEY HILL 33 – 18 BEVERLEY ARLFC

This was a much changed Blue and Golds line-up that travelled  to Bradford and there were few complaints from the coaching staff about the efforts.

Tony Spence, in charge for the day, said: ”Our tactical awareness let us down at times but if you know you have given 100 per cent then I think you can live with yourself.”     

Beverley never really built sufficient momentum in the game to give themselves a chance of victory; on more than one occasion they coughed up  possession close to their own line having just scored at the other end.

That said there was much to admire about grafting performances from Jake Hart-Fisher, Lee Stevens and Beverley’s man of the match, Kingsley Okra-Overton.

With a large number of first team regulars missing, youth was heavily relied upon and Francis Coggle and debutant Max Sutherland were not found wanting in the dummy half roles. 

Andy Walker put the hosts in front after two minutes, converted by Simon Sewell, but Beverley soon replied. A kick downfield was not dealt with by the home side and the ever eager Lewis Miller followed up to touch down. Lewis Straw converting.

Beverley did cause Dudley Hill some problems with their kick-chase game. One towering bomb from Jordan Precious was spilled for Joe Morley to touch down; only to be ruled offside. The remainder of the half saw the home side dominate, with tries from Jamie Bentley and Luke Johnson both improved by Sewell for a 22-6 interval lead.

Shortly after the break, Alistair Firth made it look being a tough day at the office for Beverley, when touching down, improved by Sewell, to stretch the lead to 28-6.   

In the 50th minute, Beverley finally established some field position and Lewis Straw sent the rampaging Kingsley Okra-Overton over, to convert the try himself. Soon after, the visitors again forced an error with a kick. The resulting set saw a few drives for the line before Lewis Miller did well to send Ben Naylor over wide out on the left flank.

Straw converted from wide out and with 25 minutes remaining and the scores standing at 28-18 there were hints of a comeback. But in a familiar theme, having got the ball from the re-start kick, Beverley had the ball stolen close to their own line.

The ensuing pressure then saw Rob Brown strike a killer blow for the home side with an unconverted try wide out. It was now a steep uphill task but Beverley continued to plug away.

Following a Simon Sewell drop-goal, in the closing minutes Lewis Straw created a chance with a chip over the top. He regathered with Ben Naylor in support but the chasing cover caught up with him and the ball was dislodged in the tackle.

That was the last notable action of the game and Beverley will look to regroup for next week when they entertain bottom of the table Askam in another crucial game as the battle  for the play-offs hots up.