Fylde RFC 7 Wharfedale 24: Visitors end Fylde's winning run

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Fylde RFC suffered their first loss in six games as Wharfedale’s defence came out on top at the Woodlands on Saturday.

A crowd of more than 900 saw fourth play fifth in National Two North, with Fylde having beaten Billingham last time out and Wharfedale playing their first match in more than a month.

Fylde started the match the better of the two sides, making it to within five metres of the line within the first five minutes but Wharfedale’s defence kept strong.

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Twelve minutes in, Dale scored the first try of the match when several phases unfolded right in front of the posts.

Fylde met Wharfedale at the Woodlands in National Two North Picture: Michelle AdamsonFylde met Wharfedale at the Woodlands in National Two North Picture: Michelle Adamson
Fylde met Wharfedale at the Woodlands in National Two North Picture: Michelle Adamson
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Looking to be best of the rest

When the ball became loose, Louis Verity chipped the ball over the scrambling Fylde defence and Oliver Cicognini touched down to break the deadlock with Sam Gaudie converting.

Fylde thought they had come up with a quick reply five minutes later when a maul drove forward before going over the line, only for Wharfedale to hold up the ball.

They got back within five metres of the line shortly afterwards but the ball was eventually spilled; mistakes such as those knock-ons started to creep throughout the Fylde side and their penalty count began to increase.

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More chances and territory came Fylde’s way in the 10 minutes before half-time but they struggled to capitalise and then saw Toby Harrison sinbinned for a high tackle.

The second half opened with Dale lock George Hedgley sinbinned six minutes in after they conceded a number of penalties in quick succession.

Once Harrison returned, Fylde aimed to exploit their man advantage to try and get themselves into the game.

However, unforced errors frustrated their ambition with Scott Rawlings’ excellent break coming to nothing when the offload was knocked on.

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Then, just as Hedgley made his way back onto the pitch, the visitors had another player replacing him in the bin with Rob Baldwin yellow-carded for a high tackle.

Fylde finally made the most of their player advantage and territory a minute later.

They used their extra man at the scrum to drive towards the line and then, once it was in sight, Tane Bentley picked up the ball and scored their first points with Greg Smith’s conversion making it 7-7.

Fylde suddenly seemed to have the advantage and luck on their side, with a couple of loose balls ending up in their hands.

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However, Wharfedale’s defence carried on doing what they had done all match and were strong in denying Fylde further points.

With 10 minutes to go, Fylde started to tire and Dale were the ones who were threatening.

They regained the lead on 73 minutes, building up the phases before Baldwin went over with Gaudie adding the extras.

Under pressure to try and level the game, Fylde conceded more penalties with Gaudie landing one to put the visitors 17-7 ahead.

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As the game drew to a close, Wharfedale completed the scoring with James Coulton crossing and Gaudie converting.

Fylde RFC: Dorrington; Lanigan, Forster (Rawlings 40), Stott, Carleton, Smith, Gould (Turner 65); Bowker (Brooks 55), Gregory, Altham (Raymont 49), Parkinson, Burrow (Ashcroft 75), Ashcroft (Parker 72), Bentley, Harrison

Wharfedale: Hodgson (Darwin 72), Davidson, Coulton, Cicognini, Hamilton, Verity, Gaudie, Dickinson, Collinson (Willis 64), Armstrong (Meehan 78), Stockton, Hedgley, Green (Fawcett 67), Markey (Beresford 58), Baldwin.