Crasswell brothers star as Hills keep up charge

Hit back: Mick Sykes scored a try for Phoenix.  PHOTOGRAPH: fsp IMAGES
Hit back: Mick Sykes scored a try for Phoenix. PHOTOGRAPH: fsp IMAGES
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WHEATLEY Hills maintained their North East One promotion challenge with a 33-14 win over visiting Northern.

Hills, who lacked key forwards Gaz Burns and Byron Elliott, took full advantage of playing down the slope with the wind at their backs to race into a match-winning 26-0 interval lead.

They opened their account in the first minute when they charged down an attempted clearance kick into touch and prop Alex Oglivy picked up the loose ball 10 metres out for a try converted by stand-off Jack Craswell.

Wheatley increased their lead on seven minutes after the ball popped out of the back of a scrum on the Northern side and flanker Luke Taplin was the first to get a touch,

Teenage flanker Ryan Craswell kept the scoreboard ticking over after rounding off a bout of good handling when stepping inside a defender to score near to the post for a try which his older brother Jack converted to make it 19-0.

Craswell also added the extras after centre Mickey Hayward had intercepted on his own 22 and raced 80 metres on a diagonal run to score in the corner.

Back-rower Tom Buckenham increased Wheatley’s lead early in the second half with a close-range try following a forward drive. Craswell tagged on the conversion to make it 33-0.

Northern started to look dangerous out wide, and hit back with converted tries on 52 minutes and the hour.

The result was never in doubt, however, with the Wheatley pack being on top for most of the final quarter,

Doncaster Phoenix suffered a 21-15 Yorkshire League Division Two defeat at Selby.

Unusually for a rugby union game the two sides turned around 0-0 at half-time with the visitors being the happier of the two teams having played into a blustery wind.

The Castle Park side took the game to Selby after the break only to fall behind against the run of play as a Selby player dropped on a loose ball and ran 60 metres or so for a converted try.

Phoenix hit back almost immediately with winger Mick Sykes rounding off a backs’ move to score a try converted by Ben Millar.

Selby got their noses in front again after moving the ball wide from a scrum heel and capitalising on a missed tackle to score a second converted try after Phoenix had dropped the ball from a restart.

Adam Burton closed the gap to just two points after scoring in the corner from a quickly-taken tap penalty. Miller edged his side into a one-point lead with a penalty under the posts.

Just when it looked as though Phoenix would hold on to their lead, Selby capitalised on another loose ball deep in their own half from a long pass which didn’t find its man to score the winning try ten minutes from time.

Wheatley’s second string romped to 55-0 win over Thornensians in their Yorkshire (South) One Merit clash.

An experienced Wheatley thirds, who featured Mick Payne and Richard Cooke in their early 50s, beat Wath seconds 36-14.

Dons’ winger Dean Colton, who missed the last two months of the season, also played and scored two tries..

Dave Wass, Paul Tomlinson, Andy Whitehead and Paul Kitchen also touched down.

Chris Whitehouse and Paul Clayton kicked four goals between them.