Shaw Cross Sharks came out second best in a close fought contest with Normanton Knights on Saturday afternoon.
Head coach Brett Turner was pleased with his side after the game but felt a slow start cost them victory.
“It is disappointing to lose, we didn’t start playing until we went two tries behind. It would’ve been a very close game if we played in the first ten minutes the way we did the rest of the game,” said Turner.
“We have got a group of young players, it is great when you are wining because their tails are up and the enthusiasm is there but when we are losing we maybe just don’t have the experience to get the win.
“We have a habit of losing close games and we need to get out of that.”
The Sharks got off to a nightmare start as they conceded two tries in the opening five minutes, the first came from an interception by Connor Taylor before a break on the left wing allowed James Sinkew to go over.
Shaw Cross kicked into life after going behind and almost levelled the scores with two tries and one conversion, Casey Johnson made a darting run towards the line before producing a clever offload to Andrew Tillotson who barged over the line.
Tillotson was forced off soon after with a dead leg, another superb pass from Johnson found Brandan French who went over for the hosts’ second try of the game.
Shaw Cross were made to pay for a knock on from the restart as Normanton scored following the scrum as they burrowed over from dummy half, the visitors added to their lead soon after as another break down the left saw them go under the posts.
The Sharks scored their third try of the game just before the break as Sam Ottewell broke the line before moving the ball back inside to Paul March who scored under the posts.
March was forced off with a leg injury only minutes into the second half, meaning the Sharks had lost both of their stand-offs to injury, Scott Talbot was called upon to lead the home side from scrum-half and played a key role in the Sharks’ second half tries.
Normanton broke down the middle of the field to score their fifth try of the game, the Shaw Cross bench were left frustrated as they felt the play should’ve been called back for a forward pass.
The Sharks replied through Joe Halloran after Talbot picked up the loose ball and moved it out wide to Benjamin Spaven who in turn flicked the ball to his winger Halloran who went over in the corner.
Normanton were put on a team warning after numerous penalties on their own line, Chris Woolford was sent to the bin a minute later for a dangerous tackle on Casey Johnson.
Shaw Cross were unable to make the most of the extra man as they were penalised for a forward pass from the penalty.
Normanton then went to the other end of the field and after the Sharks were penalised for numerous penalties the visitors took advantage as they powered over the line from close range.
Spaven and Halloran combined for a second time as the hosts went over for their fifth try of the game, Spaven was held up over the line moments before the try but was on hand to provide the assist to Halloran who notched his second of the game.
Taylor went over for his second of the game with five minutes to play and seal the victory for Normanton, Taylor was unable to add the conversion for the first time in the game.
Nathan Wright added a consolation for Shaw Cross with the last play of the game, a beautifully weighted cross-field kick from Johnson found Wright who gathered the ball well to score.
Shaw Cross are not in action until Saturday 22nd April where they face a trip to Humberside to take on Hull Dockers.
Updated 09:17 - 9 Apr 2017 by Ben McKenna