Manchester 17, Birkenhead Park 29

BIRKENHEAD Park produced one of their best displays of the season as they gained a well deserved bonus point victory to move back into third position in the North 1 West table.

The Park side was captained by Rob Doolan in the absence of Jack Ashcroft with the versatile Doolan moving from back row to hooker.

Relegation-threatened Manchester had everything to play for but they found a Park side in uncompromising mood.

An early crunch tackle by winger Matt Walls was indicative of Park's determination and it was Walls who claimed the opening try after just five minutes when he finished well on the blindside from a Sam Chidley pass.

Dave Hall added a penalty for Park, but Manchester hit back with a try from winger Alex Marchlewski who gathered a cross kick from stand off Seb Lingwood before out pacing the Park cover for a well executed score.

Park lost flanker Shaun Mooney through injury with the versatile Walls moving to the back row and Hem Johal joining the back division.

Just before half-time Park increased their lead when a well-timed pass from Will Titherington put brother Lucas through for the try converted by Hall to put the visitors 15-5 to the good.

Manchester had their best spell after the interval and number 8 James Brodie finished a driving maul to put the home side back in contention.

Tempers became somewhat frayed and Park were disrupted further when they lost substitute Johal with a nasty head injury with Dave Morgan taking over.

Manchester were reduced to 14 men when winger Dickenson was sent off for foul play and Park seized the initiative when second row John Barrowcliffe took the ball at pace and crashed through the Manchester defence for a try converted by Lucas Titherington.

Park claimed the bonus point score with a fine individual effort from Lucas Titherington with Will again converting.

The game was now beyond the hosts but they produced a spirited ending with the final score coming from centre Doug Day who converted his own try.

Park lost centre Carl Southan for a second yellow card offence in the closing stages but it was a well-deserved victory for Birkenhead.

It was a good team effort from Park with Dave Morgan and James Millward contributing off the bench.

Park competed well at the break down with Matt Walls, Martin Donnelly and John Barrowcliffe enjoying excellent games.

This Saturday Park travel to Warrington hoping to avenge defeat on the opening day of the season.