Ellesmere Port 19 Knutsford 12

KNUTSFORD were unable to topple South Lancs/Cheshire Division Three league leaders Ellesmere Port on Saturday in what was their first outing in a month.

The visitors beat Helsby last time out and put pressure on the table toppers in the opening exchanges.

As the half progressed, Ellesmere Port came more into the game and forced Knutsford to defend, but the visitors were caught out by an overlap on the left and conceded a converted try.

The remainder of the first half saw Knutsford pile on the pressure, but could not reduce the hosts’ seven-point lead before the break.

Knutsford began the second half on the attack in an attempt to get an early score, but for the most part were kept at bay by the division’s frontrunners.

However, following a period of sustained pressure Sam Catling crashed over for a try which was converted by Alex Malcolm to level the scores.

With both sides grappling for territory it was the hosts who took advantage and replied with two tries, one converted, to take a 19-7 lead.

Knutsford worked hard to dominate proceedings but it took until with final play of the game for fly half Jon Fuller to crash over and reduce the deficit to 19-12.

Malcolm was unable to convert but Knutsford gained a losing bonus point.

Geoff Crawford was full of praise for the manner in which his team had performed against the league leaders and hopes to carry their form into next week’s game at home to Linley.

Knutsford’s man-of-match was Giles Robertson.

Knutsford are welcoming new players. Contact Steve Mooney on 07891488427 or attend training on Thursday, 7.15pm at the Academy (Lower School).