Spring-like conditions greeted the large crowd as high-flying Scarborough visited Kelleythorpe at the weekend. Driffield’s team sheet showed yet more changes, with the side nearing full strength. Captain Mewburn was back from the Southern Hemisphere to take his place in the back row alongside Brankley and Morris, with Warkup and Dinsdale in the second row. Zavatti started at prop, looking to impress against his former side. In the backs, Dinsdale was fit to take his place on the wing, with Furbank at full back and Soanes partnering Stephenson in the centre.
Scarborough kicked off with a strong wind at their backs and immediately looked dangerous. Clever kicking from the scrum half, who was energetic and inventive all afternoon, created an opportunity for the winger and only last-ditch tacking from Driffield stopped him opening the scoring. Scarborough kept pressing and, though Driffield’s defence held firm, they were starting to concede penalties. With the scrum half injecting pace into the game, Scarborough opened the scoring, burrowing over from short range. A difficult conversion was missed. Driffield 0 – 5 Scarborough.
Driffield hit back immediately, with virtually their first piece of possession. Brumfield charged down a clearing kick to gain some field position, and from the resulting scrum Scarborough conceded a free kick. Brankley took it quickly and charged into the visiting defence. Recycled ball was fed to Soanes and he challenged the line, and a deft offload found Stephenson coming onto the ball from deep and he sped under the posts to give Watts an easy conversion. Driffield 7 – 5 Scarborough.
The lead changed hands soon after when a box kick over from the scrum half took a wicked bounce and was pounced upon by the winger who took the ball in full flight and scored, this time converted. Driffield 7 – 12 Scarborough.
Driffield were struggling in the scrum at this point, with the Scarborough eight winning a succession of penalties. The lineout was evenly contested, but conditions made it difficult to secure good attacking ball. Just five points adrift at this stage, Driffield would have considered that to be a good half with the wind in their faces. Scarborough however, had other ideas and struck a crucial blow just before half time. A lineout throw missed its intended target, but was picked up by the visiting flanker and he moved powerfully towards the Driffield line. The ball was recycled and a good pass found the full back running a sharp line. This try was converted to leave the half time score Driffield 7 – 19 Scarborough.
Driffield needed a fast start to the half, but a missed tackle let Scarborough establish field position. Another box kick caused havoc in the Driffield defence and only last-ditch defence tidied things up. Undeterred by the shaky start to the half, Driffield gradually started to work their way into the game. Robson had come on in the front row, and this had a significant stabilising impact in the scrum, with Driffield winning penalties of their own. Warkup pinched a Scarborough lineout, and from this Driffield were able to establish some territory of their own. Pressure told on the Scarborough defence, and Brankley stepped outside a tackle to score under the posts. Watts converted. Driffield 12 – 19 Scarborough.
Driffield struck again straight from the kick off. Mewburn claimed the restart, and his back row colleague Morris carried the ball into the Scarborough defence. Dinsdale showed great hands to draw the defence and slip the ball to Watts who moved it to Soanes. He broke over half way before finding Robinson. Good cover defence brought him to ground. From the resulting ruck, Robinson got back to his feet, and spotted space down the blind side. He chipped through and won a foot race to score an outstanding try. Watts couldn’t convert leaving the score level at Driffield 19 – 19 Scarborough..
Driffield had the momentum now, with Scarborough visibly tiring, and they had several chances to take the lead for the first time, but knock-ons or penalties conceded for crossing halted them in their tracks. A high tackle gave Furbank the chance to add three points, but his kick fell short. Not long after he got another chance, and was able to convert to give the lead back to Driffield, which was soon matched by a converted penalty by Scarborough evening the game back up at Driffield 22 – 22 Scarborough.
With time running out, Driffield had a scrum in midfield. A backs move was halted by an interception and it was Scarborough suddenly on the attack. Good scramble defence from Driffield stopped the attack, but it was only a matter of time before the Driffield defence ran out of numbers and Scarborough crossed next to the posts with the last play of the game, leaving the final score Driffield 22 – 27 Scarborough.