ON a day dominated by possibly the hardest element to deal with, a strong gusting wind, Old Otliensians couldn't overcome a 17-point half-time deficit and lost 22-15 against West Park Leeds at Chaffers Field on Saturday.

“Winning” the second half 10-0 and matching the visitors’ three tries was not sufficient and although they pressed hard in the last quarter, further scores were not to be.

The visitors won the toss and chose to play with the wind at their backs. From the kick-off, they ran the ball back into their opponents’ 22.

‘Ensians, with little option but to run their way out of trouble, saw a pass intercepted and after only five minutes a converted try put them 7-0 down.

A good break by the home side’s winger Nick Hesketh was halted, but play was brought back for a penalty, and with kicking into the wind being so difficult, a scrum was taken.

West Park won the scrum penalty and a kick with the wind took play into the ‘Ensian 22.

An intercepted West Park pass raised home spectators’ hopes, but these were quickly dashed by an off-side decision, which was converted to give the visitors a lead of 10-0 after 12 minutes.

An immediate riposte pinned the visitors in their 22 and Joe Armitage went over for an unconverted try on the quarter-hour mark.

Ollie Eaves made a good break, but a turnover handed possession back to West Park, who seized the chance to run strongly for a further try. A good conversion made the scoreboard 17-5 with 20 minutes gone.

‘Ensian forwards had dominance at the scrum, pushing their opponents back time and time again and Luke Cowdell came into the picture with trademark line-breaking, but mistakes were costing the home side.

A lost line-out gave the visitors another pressure position and on 30 minutes an unconverted try pushed the board further, to show 22-5 against the hosts.

Fifteen minutes after the restart, ‘Ensians stole a line-out and Armitage was over for his second try to cut the lead to 22-10.

‘Ensian forwards were on top and play in the right areas of the field was now achievable.

Sustained pressure in West Park’s 22 resulted in a scrum five metres out, with skipper Sam Featherstone touching down for a pushover try.

Just 22-15 down with wind advantage and 10 minutes to go gave a glimpse of a try bonus point and a share of the spoils, but the visitors had other ideas.

Defences in the centre of the field had been tight throughout and neither side could find a real scoring opportunity.

Will Cooper’s interception was almost one such, but was called back for an off-side infringement.

It remained 22-15, with a losing bonus point the only reward for the ‘Ensians.