Knights round off pre season with Hunslet win: Sunday 28th January - Pre-Season
Three tries in the last five minutes sealed York City Knights an encouraging 30-6 victory over Betfred League 1 rivals Hunslet to round off the 2018 pre-season programme at Bootham Crescent yesterday.
James Ford started with a reasonably strong team despite Tim Spears (dead leg), Joe Batchelor and Harry Carter (both concussion) sitting out the Knights final warm up game. Will Dagger, Joe Cator and Brad Clavering all featured from the bench on Dual-Registration.
Hunslet started brightly in what was their first pre-season game and won a few penalties off the back of their early enthusiasm, but it was the Knights who opened the scoring after weathering the early storm – Ben Cockayne running onto a lovely little inside ball to score his first try in York colours under the posts. Connor Robinson converted for a 6-0 lead after the opening quarter.
The rest of the half was standard pre-season fare with both teams making quite a few errors while testing out potential combinations, and the Knights took a slim 6-0 lead into the sheds at the break.
Jake Butler-Fleming and Ben Cockayne were causing the visitors plenty of problems in the second half and created a few opportunities, one half break was closed down before Cockayne then had a try ruled out for a foot in touch.
The Knights doubled their lead after 55 minutes as hooker Andy Ellis deceptively crossed untouched under the posts, with Robinson again goaling.
Hunslet’s best period of the game followed as they spent almost twenty minutes camped in the Knights half, however York’s impressive defence largely held firm – a George Flanagan ‘barge over’ try, goaled by former Knight Danny Grimshaw – was the visitor’s only reward in the 69th minute.
Liam Jackson extended the Knights lead in the 75th minute with a well taken try, before the impressive Brad Delaney made the game safe two minutes later with a try from close range.
Delaney’s second try in two minutes was the pick of the game – JBF put Cockayne clear down the right edge, who laid up a perfect kick for Delaney to gather and score as the hooter sounded. Will Dagger converted all three late tries for a final score of 30-6.
The Knights now focus all their attentions to the blockbuster opening game in the 2018 Betfred League 1 – against former Super League and World Club Champions Bradford Bulls at Bootham Crescent on Sunday 18th February… Tickets are available online HERE.