Knaresborough 5-128 Wetherby: ‘Boro head coach refuses to fault players

Wetherby's Barney Roberts makes a tackle (Guy Roberts)
Wetherby's Barney Roberts makes a tackle (Guy Roberts)

Knaresborough rugby club head coach Adam Pike refused to fault his players despite his side suffering their heaviest defeat of the season on Saturday.

Wetherby ran out 128-5 winners at the weekend to continue their perfect season and heaped more pressure on Pike’s side who are stranded at the bottom of Yorkshire Four.

The clash marked the third time this season an opponent has reached a century of points against Knaresborough with the most recent coming in February’s 102-0 defeat to Mosborough.

With Wetherby planning for life next season in Yorkshire Three, the result all but confirms Knaresborough’s relegation to the fifth division.

“We knew what was in store for us on Saturday because of what Wetherby have achieved this season, scoring well over 50 points every game, so we knew what to expect,” Pike explained.

“We tried to ruffle their feathers and give them a really good game and try and bring them down a peg but to lose by such a margin and to keep battling deserves a lot of credit for our lads.

“Our points were scored right at the end of the game and that, to me, does not show a side willing to give up. It shows a willingness to stick at it and willing to make what impact they could on the game.

“We wish Wetherby all the best in Yorkshire Three because to go unbeaten all season is incredible.

“ I can’t fault our guys because they have done fantastic this weekend and now it’s all about building for next season.

“I’m not disappointed as such because the guys go out there every Saturday and they’re all amateurs.

“All of them work other jobs and after 40 minutes most of their heads would have been down but these guys are built of something else.”

The defeat leaves Knaresborough seven points from safety with two games remaining and, while relegation is not confirmed, Pike is already planning for next season in Yorkshire Five.

However, the Knaresborough head coach is confident his side can make a quick return to the division but stressed that they still need to recruit more players for greater strength in depth.

He said: “Our focus now is for promotion to return to Yorkshire Four. Hopefully we can draw some players in to help make us a better rugby club. We can be a great club but we just need some strength in depth.

“A few years ago we dropped into Yorkshire Five and we went straight back up so it is achievable. It’s very hard to stay in Yorkshire Four though.

“Fingers crossed we can take 10 points from the next two games and then we can say ‘we’ll be back in a year’.