Caldy begin with win over Sale FC

Caldy have hopes of promotion for this campaign
©Chris Heal

Caldy started their National Two North campaign with an 11-23 win over newly-promoted Sale FC at Heywood Road.

Sale produced a number of unforced errors throughout the game whereas the visitors seemed to have the more clinical edge which was typified by tries from Paul Sellwood and Nick Royle either side of half-time.

It was Sale who took the game to the away side early on as they opened their scoring for the season with a penalty from fly-half Liam McGovern, but his opposite number – Jack Levin- responded with two of his own before Sellwood crossed on 30 minutes.

Levin nudged over another penalty and Sale were in danger of letting the game slip away from them, but winger Ciaran Conolly crucially touched down just before the break to keep his side well in this contest.

With the score at 8-16, McGovern reduced the gap to five points as he added another penalty, but Royle’s try just before the hour mark killed off Sale’s fightback.

From there, Sale just couldn’t break down the Caldy defence and became ill-disciplined as they were left frustrated by Gareth Davies’ & Simon Verbickas’ men.

This was a tough first game for Sale FC in their opening National Two match and they were left rueing a whole host of handling errors in key scoring areas; which ultimately cost them in this encounter.

As for Caldy, they finished sixth last season in this division, just five points behind third place, and showed their experience with an excellent territory and kicking game matched by solid defence when Sale threatened.

Sale travel to Preston Grasshoppers next week while Caldy are away to Macclesfield.

Elsewhere on the opening day in National Two North, one of the promotion favourites Sedgley Park thumped Broadstreet 51-18 at Park Lane whilst Harrogate edged out Yorkshire rivals Otley 15-10.

The newcomers who were relegated from National One - Tynedale and Macclesfield – were both left stunned.

Tynedale were upstaged by Leicester Lions 17-20 on home soil whilst Macc lost 22-5 away at Stourbirdge despite dominating possession in the first half.

Sandal and South Leicester were both promoted into this division last season, but had contrasting fortunes in their first matches.  Sandal produced an excellent home display and secured a bonus point in a 34-7 win against the Luctonians, but South Leicester lost 24-17 away at Huddersfield.

In the final result, Chester narrowly beat Preston Grasshoppers 19-15 at Hare Lane.

Round One Results

Sedgley Park 51-18 Broadstreet

Stourbridge 22-5 Macclesfield

Tynedale 17-20 Leicester Lions 

Sandal 34-7 Luctonians

Sale FC 11-23 Caldy

Harrogate 15-10 Otley

Huddersfield 24-17 South Leicester

Chester 19-15 Preston Grasshoppers

National Two South

Title challengers Bishop’s Stortford got off to a commanding start with a convincing 22-41 win away at National Three London & South East champions Bury St Edmunds.

Taunton also sent out a message to the rest of the league as they won 16-47 against Old Elthamians while Old Albanian  thrashed Launceston 3-47 to show that they are looking to bounce straight back to National One.

The other new arrivals in National Two – Redingensans and Barnes both suffered home defeats. Redingensans lost 16-37 to Redruth whereas Barnes lost by just a point to Canterbury in a 9-10 defeat.

Dorking’s miserable 2015 continued as they began this season with another defeat, this time against Cambridge won took a 14-32 victory away with them.

Southend, who survived in this division on games won last season, started in superb fashion with a 40-24 home win against Chinnor and Worthing’s promotion chances have taken a small dent as they lost 31-18 away at Clifton.

Round One Results

Redingensans 16-37 Redruth

Clifton 31-18 Worthing 

Southend 40-24 Chinnor

Old Elthamians 16-47 Taunton

Launceston 3-47 Old Albanians

Bury St Edmunds 22-41 Bishop's Stortford

Dorking 14-32 Cambridge

Barnes 9-10 Canterbury

National League Rugby