Blyth battle back from poor start to beat promotion hopefuls Bishop Auckland

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Blyth entertained Bishop Auckland on a cold afternoon expecting a hard game against a side challenging for promotion.

And for the first ten minutes the visitors put the home side under a lot of pressure and it eventually told when Bishops scored the game’s first try.

The visitors added a second when a Blyth player was caught in possession and they scored between the posts for a 12-0 lead.

Blyth responded with a penalty from fly-half O’Neil before wing forward Smith barged his way over from a five-metre scrum to reduce the arrears to four points.

Blyth were playing with confidence and were unlucky not to score from a driving maul.

But it was the visitors who had the last say in the first half with a breakaway try in the corner to make the interval score 17-8.

In the second half the home forwards took control and from a scrum against the head, winger Clark scored in the corner.

Sutherland missed the conversion but added a penalty soon afterwards to reduce the arrears to one point.

With the forwards in control it looked only a matter of time before the winning score came and Bishops were forced into conceding penalties on three occasions, but instead of taking a shot at goal, Blyth went for the try only for the visitors’ defence to hold out.

But the expected winning score did come when the ball was spun along the line for full-back Broadhead to score in the corner, with Sutherland adding the two points with only a few minutes on the clock.

From the kick-off Blyth attacked again and almost snatched a bonus point for scoring four tries but just failed to get over the whitewash.

A much improved display from Blyth against a side near the top of the league.

Next week Blyth are away to league leaders Hartlepool, kick-off 2.15pm.