Liverpool St Helens 43

West Park 26

SATURDAY saw a large derby day crowd treated to a cracking game of rugby between the two teams at the top of the newly formed ADM Premier League.

If ever a justification was needed for the recent bold step by the Lancashire RFU and its clubs to provide practical, regional and competitive rugby, this was it.

By the end of the afternoon LSH had reached the top spot, with just six points separating the top six clubs.

An all action opening saw West Park take an early lead in the third minute after an LSH knock on delivered an interception try for Holland from 50 yards.

LSH replied eight minutes later when a Danny Webster break in the West Park 22 was continued by Sam Ward to score.

Park hit back soon after with a Green try under the posts to give them a 5-14 lead after 15 minutes. Although winning the lion’s share of possession LSH couldn’t make it count until skipper Darren Wilson burrowed his way over after a series of attacking drives, converted by McBride.

In keeping with the frenetic pace of the first half, both sides added a further try in the closing five minutes, Jamie Morris racing over after a decisive break from Matt Cunliffe and one from Park’s Ainsworth by the left corner flag. Park lead 19-17 at the break.

LSH started the second half in determined fashion and went ahead with another short range piece of sniping from Wilson after his hard working forwards had transported the ball 40 yards to the line, converted by McBride. This signalled a period of dominance for the home side, skilfully martialled by Wilson and Alex McClurg at half back, going further ahead with a score from No 8 Danny Webster from a push over try before the ten-point lead was almost immediately reduced to three, 29-26, with a breakaway try from distance from the Park’s Winstanley with 15minutes to go.

It was at this point that the Moss Lane Faithful held their breath, having witnessed their team conceding late tries too often this season. On this occasion they needn’t have worried as LSH asserted once again, initially with a try from Alex McClurg after an excellent passing move and finally the best worked try of the afternoon from winger Lee Holland, after good work from Matt Cunliffe, Sam Ward and Chris Hall, both converted by McBride.