Saturday saw a top of the table clash with Old Brodleians at Kelleythorpe. Both sides were missing key players, but that was not to detract from the passion, or ultimately the drama.
Driffield kept the ball for the first five minutes, but were met with robust defence from a bigger side. Despite probing hard and showing good ball control, three points were all they could come away with after fifteen minutes, following a late shot on scrum half Robinson. That was all the points the home side could muster in the opening half despite the best efforts of Johnson, playing out of position in the back row, who carried hard and made good yards.
Brodleians responded with a penalty of their own to level the score heading into half time.
The Woldsmen struck the first blow fifteen minutes into the second half, with another penalty after Brods lost a man to a yellow card to extend their lead to 6-3.
It would be another fifteen minutes before another score, when Driffield claimed their only try of the day. Murray kicked deep and turned the defence, who returned the ball to Robinson. He chipped the ball through before regathering. Driffield recycled the ball before Robinson made the crucial break, sniping down the blindside. He was tackled, but found Ramsden on his shoulder with an offload – he scored near the posts but the conversion went wide.
Driffield dropped the restart and invited pressure on themselves, and Brods attacked relentlessly. Driffield’s defence held firm until a penalty was kicked to touch giving Brods field position five yards from the home side’s line. A catch and drive was swiftly followed by five points which was well converted from wide out leaving the score 11-10 with the clock counting down.
Driffield went back on the attack, but turned the ball over near the Brods line. However, an eight man shove put the opposing scrum under pressure and won a penalty. Watts converted but, with the lead just four points, there was still time for things to change. Driffield conceded a penalty from the kick-off and Brods kicked close to the try line, looking to repeat their earlier catch and drive. Driffield repelled the initial drive, but Brods went again. Desperate defence kept the opposition out and a penalty gave Driffield the chance to kick to touch and claim the victory 14-10.
The win takes Driffield to second in the table, and drops Old Brodleians from top to fourth, just one point behind Driffield. Another tough home fixture beckons next weekend, when Driffield host third-place Heath.