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Rossendale 37, Birkenhead Park 10

BIRKENHEAD Park suffered a second successive defeat in the new North Premier League although there were signs of improvement.

Park started well, but Dave Hall was uncharacteristically off-target with two early penalties and in the 11th minute Rossendale struck first with a Lewis Allen penalty.

Stand-off Allen added a second kick on 27 minutes and then winger Matt Neary grabbed the first try of the afternoon, improved by Allen's conversion.

Park competed well with prop Peter Doolan to the fore and Jack Ashcroft securing good line out possession.

Centre Ollie Wharton split the home defence with an angled run to touch down just before half time.

Dave Hall converted to keep Park in contention at 13-7 at the break.

He narrowed the gap further with a second penalty on 46 minutes as the game continued to be hard fought.

Second row Josh Smith and flanker Sean Mooney battled well for Park but the game's complexion suddenly changed when Neary went clear for his second try of the afternoon.

Rossendale secured the ball and exploited some woeful tackling to go the length of the pitch with centre Jack Ward touching down.

It was game over a few minutes later when Rossendale again attacked from deep and prop Nick Flynn was on hand to finish off another long range attack.

Allen converted all three tries and also added a penalty ten minutes from time.

This Saturday, Park welcome Pocklington to the Upper Park in the first ever fixture between the clubs.