Wetherby ‘can do even better’ claims coach despite imperious start to Yorkshire Three season

Wetherby RUFC in action (Photo: Guy Roberts)
Wetherby RUFC in action (Photo: Guy Roberts)

Wetherby director of rugby Mike Hicks issued a worrying statement to the rest of Yorkshire Division Three, saying the Reds have yet to hit their stride.

Wetherby top the table with five wins out of five matches since rising up into the division.

And the Grange Park outfit managed to extend their record unbeaten run to 38 matches at the weekend, with a 34-17 victory over Old Otliensians, the last team to beat them, more than 18 months ago.

Hicks admitted the distraction of the World Cup was causing dilemmas over selection, with unavailability causing an inconsistent and inexperienced line-up.

Hicks said: “We are pleased that we have acclimatised to this league and we are winning.

“But we are not playing as well as we can do but we are missing players at the minute.

“Until the World Cup is over, we are changing things about because a lot have tickets.

“But it’s a squad game and everyone is playing their part.”

Will Jefferson broke the early deadlock at Otliensians when he ran into space to score a try converted by Connor Sheridan.

Sheriden then doubled the lead as he surged past the Otliensians full-back and added a second conversion.

Otliensians struck back with a try of their own, but two penalties gave the Reds a 13-point advantage into the break.

Despite the strong first half performance, Wetherby were pegged back after the restart with the Otley side scoring a try and a penalty.

The Reds have rarely been threatened over the last 18 months, but they responded to the challenge and found top gear again with late tries for Jack Kaye and Sheridan securing the bonus point win.

Hicks said: “They were a very good side and they are going to be right up there in the top five or six, added to the fact we were away from home.

“We started off very well and then fell off a little bit when they got us into an arm wrestle.

“Thankfully we just powered on through. As soon as we got it right, we carved it out. It showed we are fit, and strong and very focused about how we can win games.”

Wetherby had hammered Leeds Medics and Dentists 104-0 seven days before their win over Otliensians.

However, Hicks said it was winning the closer games that delighted him most.

He added: “Last week was great in the fact that we kept going but we completely outclassed them. This was the one to be proud of.”

The Reds are fancied to carry on their unbeatable streak this weekend, too, when Leeds Modernians visit Grange Park.ff 3pm).