John Mooney: New Earswick All Blacks vs Norland Sharks
The Yorkshire Men's League Division One play-off final between leaders New Earswick All Blacks and second-placed Norland Sharks at Featherstone Lions ground produced a pulsating contest between two very physical and committed teams with the Sharks finally prevailing 33-20 thanks to a superb second-half performance.
The All-Blacks were first on the scoresheet when a cut-out pass sent their left-winger scurrying for the corner for an unconverted try but the Sharks quickly replied with converted try after a drive for the line. A penalty for holding down took the York side into the lead but Norland hit back with a flowing move that saw them go over in the corner, too far out for the conversion, and a half-time lead of 10-8. The Sharks were first out of the blocks in the second period as another flowing move took them over, again in the corner, then classy half-back Ben Rowan dummied and jinked his way over for a converted try which put them well in control. The All-Blacks weren't in the mood to lie down and when their tenacious winger went in again for a converted score it was back to a six-point game though that was quickly doubled when prop forward Ash James produced a superb pass for winger Nathan Parkinson to go over. With a successful conversion to follow it looked all over but once again New Earswick battled back to close to six points before Carl Pettmore slotted over a field goal and Jordan Rowan finished the opposition off with a battling effort. The game was a great testimony to the quality of the two sides who will do battle again next season in the Premier Division. In the earlier Division Two play-off final, a late fight-back wasn't enough for Hull Wyke to catch Bramley Buffaloes, who ran out 29-20 winners while at Batley In the Premier Division play-off final, Beverley fell to Siddal Academy 30-12.
In the Conference Trophy Final, also at Batley, Division One's Hunslet Club Parkside stunned Wigan St Pat's, easy winners over West Hull in the semi-final, 22-0.