12-man Normanton Knights continue play-offs bid with victory but another loss for Eastmoor Dragons

Normanton Knights earned sweet revenge for a defeat earlier in the season to Barrow Island when they were comfortable winners of Saturday’s return game in Division Two of the National Conference League.

By Tony Harber
Monday, 18th July 2022, 3:04 pm
Updated Monday, 18th July 2022, 3:07 pm

The Knights had been edged 28-24 in Barrow, but were 31-12 winners at Queen Elizabeth Drive and moved up to fourth place, above Clock Face Miners, who were held to a draw at Dewsbury Moor Maroons.

Normanton are beginning to look a good bet for the end of season play-offs as they have only lost one of their last eight matches and are now only one point behind the Barrow side whose form is going the other way with four losses in their last five.

The comfortable victory came despite having Adam Biscomb sent-off on the half-hour for alleged punching.

Charlie Barker landed six goals for Normanton Knights in their impressive victory over Barrow Island.

It was only 6-6 at the time with all to play for, but the Knights dug deep with their 12 men producing an outstanding effort.

They had opened with a Kieran Bailey try and a Charlie Barker conversion before Cam Corrie hit back for the visitors and Adam Jackson improved the try.

The loss of forward Biscomb looked to have given Barrow the chance to take charge, but it was the home side who went on to have much the better of the rest of the contest.

Barker put Normanton back in front with a try just before half-time and his second of what would go on to be six goals made it 12-6 at the break.

The lead was stretched a point when man of the match Jake Crossland landed a drop-goal 10 minutes into the second period and a minute later the numbers were evened up for 10 minutes with Island’s Noah Robinson yellow carded for a high tackle.

Crossland darted over almost immediately with the Knights now going more than two scores ahead.

As the game entered the final quarter, Jake Tyson and Ashley Haynes raced in for further tries for the home side.

Barrow did score the final try through Robinson five minutes from time with Brandon Corrie converting.

But there was no doubting the Knights’ superiority on the day as they continued their fine form with Jake Crossland at the heart of their best work.

Dewsbury Celtic provide the opposition this Saturday with Normanton at home again.

Bottom of the table Eastmoor Dragons were no match for second-placed Waterhead in Division Three.

Although Ashley Allman went over for a try in the first half and Danny Johnson added the extras to make it 12-6 it was Waterhead who eventually ran away with the game, winning 56-6.

The visitors, who had prevailed 76-6 in Oldham, held sway with three tries and eight goals by Ciaran Dean and a Danny Yates hat-trick, while Gareth Owen bagged a brace.

Jenson Hamilton and James Perks also crossed for tries in their commanding display.

The Dragons are back on their travels this Saturday when away to Leigh East.