Birkenhead Park welcomed the Vale of Lune to a very wet and windy Upper Park on Saturday and both sides produced an entertaining game in tricky conditions.

Park had a much changed line-up which included recalls for Nic Witte, Dave Morgan and Alan Hughes and had first starts for Pete Coles and Tom Guest. Ex Colt Luke Johnson also made his debut off the bench.

The visitors started in positive fashion and after some good attacking play took a deserved five-point lead. Park responded well but found the visitors defence hard to break down but they did get their first points on the board through a Dave Hall penalty. The match had now turned in Parks favour and they took the lead when Fly half Garn Roberts touched down for a five pointer converted by Hall.

The rest of the half was a fairly even encounter with both teams having their chances to score but both teams had to settle for a penalty each.

Half-Time 13-8

Conditions were now horrendous with driving rain and a howling gale forcing most of the spectators to take cover. The players to their credit produced an entertaining second half.

Park winger Tigger Tyrer produced a barnstorming forty yard break which he looked certain to score, before ex-Park Centre Olly Jacques hauled him down just short of the line. Debutant Prop Tom Guest made a few strong carries and Park definitely looked like they could score a couple of tries but were repelled by some excellent defending from the visitors. Despite their best efforts Park only added three Hall penalties to the score in the second half and Vale had one penalty.

Vale battered away at the Park line in the final minutes in search of a bonus point but their best efforts were thwarted by some stern defence by Alan Hughes and Jack Ashcroft.

Final score: Park 22-11 Vale of Lune

Team Manager Terry Hall said: “I’m delighted by the effort and commitment shown by the lads today and we definitely deserved the win.

"It’s been tough as we’ve so many injuries but the lads who have come in have done a grand job.”