IT was only in the final 10 minutes of this tense play-off game that Hinckley was in the ascendancy and the final score somewhat flattered the home team in front of a partisan crowd, despite the very large following from the Wirral.

It was Wirral who took the lead in the 13th minute when a well-executed backs move gave Mark Williams the opportunity to score in the corner. However the home side hit back with a try through one of their characteristic rolling mauls, which is a feature of their game.

With a substantial penalty count in Wirral's favour, a Craig Harvey penalty restored the lead for the Wirral side and five minutes later the lead was increased to 5-15 when after pressure captain, Craig Harvey crashed over close to the posts with brother, Danny converting.

However Wirral could not maintain that lead until the half time whistle and another rolling maul by the Hinckley forwards and a try, reduced the arrears for the home side to 10-15.

Minutes after the break the scores were level. Hinckley stole the ball in the Wirral 20m area and their forwards rumbled forward again to score.

The home side took the lead for the first time in the 57th minute when Joe Glover converted a penalty from 48m and a few minutes later a further penalty extended the lead to 21-15.

The home side had no answer to the Wirral backs when on 63 minutes a break by Wirral enabled Matt Loon to put in Mark Williams for his second try to reduce the arrears to one point.

Wirral were now in the ascendancy and had Hinckley pinned down in their 20m area for several minutes but much as they tried they could not press home their advantage.

Whilst pressing for the potential winning points, a Wirral player transgressed and was yellow carded and so the momentum was lost.

A break downfield by the Hinckley prop, Stephen Harvey set up field position for another try by their forwards in the 78th minute, which was converted and meant that Wirral would have to score twice to win.

In what was the final play of the game Hinckley spun the ball wide to their backs and the right winger sped in for a try in the corner to increase the winning margin to 13 points.

Against an experienced team, who have played at a higher level and on their own sloping ground, this was one of Wirral's best performances of the season but it is now back to the drawing board to plan for next season, which promises to be an even tougher league than this season.