See the match programme here.

Attention now turned to Papa John’s Community Cup rugby.  Driffield had a few missing for the game, but still turned out a strong squad, so no excuses.

In the forwards, the front row took it’s usual look except Bryce McKinnon, who is injured and returns home on Sunday.  Ben Johnson started at Number 8 – joined in the back row by Jack Webster and Will Hughes. In the backs, Jonty Megginson made his debut at full back.  Top-scorer Kalani Grant left us on Tuesday.

On a cold but bright day, with a cold north wind blowing across the pitch, Blackburn kicked off and, from the off, it was clear this was going to be a game of open running rugby.  Play was evenly-matched, with plenty of strong attacking met by solid defence.

With ten minutes gone, the first scoring opportunity came, when Rix went through to the left of the sticks but was held up over the line.

Blackburn cleared their lines, and responded with an excellent break in the centres exploiting careless tackling.  The attack was only halted five meters out, when the winger was bundled into touch.

It was now Driffield’s turn to press, camping in the Blackburn 22, but unable to finally breach the solid defence.

On the half-hour, it was Blackburn’s turn to threaten with a 50 meter break, and a man over.  But the certain try-scoring opportunity was wasted with a poor final pass.

It was now Driffield’s chance to score, when Webster broke through the centre of the park, making 50 meters before being halted at the 22.

Play went through the phases, looking for any weakness and it looked like Rix would score – he crossed the whitewash following a quick tap from a penalty on the 22 but was again held up.  But the referee had spotted another infringement, and gave a Blackburn player a yellow card.  The penalty kick was converted by Watts to open the account after 35 minutes.  D 3 – 0 B

From the restart, the ball was moved to Webster who broke through gaps from the half-way and headed toward the try line.  He shipped the ball right to Robinson, who found his way through on the wing to score wide out.  The conversion was missed.  D 8 – 0 B

With seconds to go in the half, Driffield had a lineout eight meters out.  The catch was secured and the ruck rumbled forward.  Sowersby picked the ball from the tail and went round the side to catch the defence napping and score the try.  Watts converted.  D 15 – 0 B HT

Soon after the restart, Driffield again had a lineout at short distance.  This time, the ball was tapped short to the waiting Henry Hughes, who had come round on a planned move and went over the line unopposed, catching the defence off-guard.  Watts converted.  D 22 – 0 B

With seven minutes gone in the half, Blackburn added to their problems when the referee showed one of their players a yellow card for backchat.

Driffield worked their way up the left of the pitch to the 22, before bringing the ball back infield to Watts.  The defence parted like the Red Sea, leaving Watts an easy run in for a try under the sticks, which he converted.  D 29 – 0 B

It looked possible that the flood gates would open, but Blackburn were not down yet, and attacked the Driffield line, being held up over the line.

With Blackburn back to full strength, it was Driffield’s turn for one in the bin, when Mewburn was shown yellow.

With the man advantage, and 20 minutes gone in the half, Blackburn had a scrum-five.  The ball was secured, and worked right, making a two-man overlap.  This time the final pass was good, and they went in at the corner.  The conversion suffered the cruel fate of the oval ball, landing on top of the cross-bar and bouncing back out.  D 29 – 5 B

With Mewburn back on, Driffield attacked, moving the ball from left to right and back, looking for a gap.  Finally it was in Grant’s hands with a man outside him.  He dummied the remaining defender, and galloped in to score under the sticks.  Watts added the extras.    D 36 – 5 B

For the remaining ten minutes, Blackburn never gave up and defended well against Rix in particular, who made two outrageous breaks carving through the middle, weaving left and right.  On both occasions, when a try looked certain, Rix was stopped with desperate tackling.

The whistle blew with Driffield the worthy winners, and a long coach trip back for Blackburn with little to show except that they showed fantastic never-give-up spirit.

The 2nd XV team entertained Sandal in the Yorkshire Premier League semi-final, and lost 5-12 in a very tight game

The 3rd XV were in the Merit play-off action, away against Pocklington 2s and won 38-21 to reach the final for the fourth year on the bounce.

The Ladies 1st XV played Kendal Wasps on Sunday, and lost 12-29.