Driffield 10 Hartlepool Rovers 0

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HARTLEPOOL Rovers went down fighting at Kelleythorpe in this relegation clash, but scoring no points for the second time this season is a worry, with the chances to climb off the bottom of the table slipping away.

Only hosts Driffield and Morpeth of the bottom six won on Saturday, so Rovers, in theory, are no worse off.

But the fact remains, however, that the last three weekends’ defeats to Durham City, Old Brodleians and now Driffield are looking increasingly costly.

All these matches were winable and if those 12 points had been taken, Rovers would now be third-bottom and only three points behind Pontefract, who have still to visit the Friarage.

Ifs, buts and maybes are one thing – performing on the day and getting results are another.

This East Riding venue has seen some heavy defeats for the Whites over the years and a 10-0 loss could be viewed as something of a moral victory in this dismal season.

A side, however, that doesn’t score double figures is unlikely to win matches.

Once again, there was no shortage of effort, but other than one or two forays into the home 22, Rovers didn’t look like scoring.

Driffield: Birch, Smith, Wright, Ollett, Harding, Lucas, Gray (Hedges 58), Mitchell-Williams, Byrne, Llewellyn, Borman, Cooper, Hamilton (Dervey 63), Stephenson (c), Beachell. Sub (not used): Bradshaw.

Penalties awarded 8, kicked 1, missed 1; scrums won 10, line-outs won 16

Try: Beachell 50. Con: Birch 50. Pen: Birch 18

Rovers: Masshedar, Lilley, Foreman, Coulson, B Cushlow, Sainty, King (A Arnell 60), Tucker, J Cushlow, I Pinchen (Wise 60), A Brown, Thubron (c)(A Pinchen 50), S Hall, Grazier, Dring

Penalties awarded 4, kicked 0, missed 0; scrums won 14, 1 against the head; line-outs won, 9.

Referee: John Wolstenholme (Yorkshire)

Sin-bin: None

Other results: Carlisle 27 Northern 17; Cleckheaton 24 Old Brodleians 11; Durham City 7 Morpeth 12; Team Northumbria 29 Pontefract 11; Wheatley Hills 45 Old Crossleyans 0