A YOUTHFUL and injury depleted Malton & Norton RUFC were no match for a well organised and determined Morpeth outfit – losing their North One East clash 36-12.

M&N's cause was made even more difficult when they lost centre Vus Dyantjies with an ankle injury just three minutes into the game.

Morpeth should have opened the scoring after ten minutes when Malton infringed in front of their own posts. However, for some inexplicable reason the ball flew wide of its mark and the visitors could breathe again.

Indeed, Malton could have taken the lead on the quarter hour when a Zweli Sodladla penalty, from almost halfway, narrowly missed its mark.

Malton's inexperienced forwards were struggling at both the line-out and set scrummage but the defence throughout the side kept the hosts at bay – until the 25th minute when the Morpeth pack drove the away side back at a five-metre scrum. The No.8 forward picked up and drove over for the inevitable try.

To their credit Malton stuck to the task but the relentless pressure they were under meant that far too many penalties were conceded at the breakdowns. And in the 34th minute Morpeth increased their lead with a well struck kick.

With stoppage time being played, the hosts were again in scoring territory and opted for a scrum instead of taking the three points on offer. Once more the Malton pack was decimated and the push over try was scored.

With a half-time score of 17-0, M&N had done well to limit their hosts to just two tries.

The second half began with Malton raising the tempo and keeping the ball alive for long periods.

The tactic appeared to catch Morpeth slightly flat-footed and, having retained possession through several phases of play, Malton flanker Tom Lowry made a break before handing on to scrum half Paul Angus. He, in turn, put the ball into the hands of the ever willing Ali Fothergill who crossed for Malton's first score.

There were definite signs of improvement from M&N but the hosts had the next say.

Malton initially held the shove at a scrum 20 metres out on the left. However, a strong break by the Morpeth back row set up good ball for the backs who swiftly moved the ball to the opposite wing for a well worked try.

Malton were still fighting and keeping the ball moving whenever in possession. Once more they reaped some reward.

Good handling and determined driving took them deep into the home 22, where fly half James Bulmer made a half break to feed centre Nick Rangiuira who burst through for a well deserved try. Sodladla converted to make the score 22-12.

As the half progressed, Malton began to tire as a result of the pressure they were under in the pack.

Morpeth gained a third pushover try and took full advantage of Malton's lack of concentration to get a final try from a tap penalty.

Tired they may have been but Malton were not finished. From deep in their own 22 they moved the ball quickly through several pairs of hands for wing Tom Foan to break free and make fully 80 metres before being caught and handing on to Fothergill in support.

Unfortunately, with the line in sight, Malton were penalised and the final whistle brought the game to an end.

M&N are scheduled to meet Hull Ionians in the Yorkshire Cup at The Gannock on Saturday.

Malton: Z. Sodladla, T. Foan, V. Dyantjies, N. Rangiuira, H. Coulson, J. Bulmer, P. Angus, N. Salisbury, J. Vasoncelos, J. Bulmer, J. Rounthwaite, A. Fothergill, T. Lowry, A. Mitchell, W. Hughes. Subs: (used) C. Page, C. Corner.