Taylor strike edges derby RFC’s way

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WHITBY RFC came out on top of this local derby with Sleights FC after an entertaining local derby at Caedmon School in which the away side scored all five goals.

Whitby started the better and led inside five minutes when new signing Paul Smith’s run down the right saw him cross for an unmarked Ben Watson to head home.

This seemed to wake Sleights up and with the wind and slope behind them they started to dominate, with Fish saving superbly from a 25-yard drive and Steele heading off the line from a corner.

Watson missed a glorious chance when he raced clear and rounded the keeper only to hit the post as Sleights survived a scare.

The home side levelled on 23 minutes when Ben Hogarth turned a cross into his own net following good work down the right.

Whitby led again seven minutes later when Hogarth made amends for his earlier blunder to poke home from two yards following a corner, and despite a late siege from Sleights, Whitby RFC led 2-1 at the break.

The second half saw Sleights come into their own again and level on 62 minutes when this time Simon Taylor was the guilty culprit as he lashed into his own net from eight yards to again give Sleights a way back into the game.

Sleights pressed as Whitby RFC struggled to get going in the final 20 minutes, but it was the away side who clinched all three points when sub Mike Brennan played the ball to Taylor far on the left touchline and his cross-cum-shot flew into the top right corner of the net to give RFC the lead with eight minutes remaining.

Smith had a great chance two minutes from the end but fired wide and Whitby held on for the win.

Whitby RFC manager Chris Headlam was relieved to get the result.

“We started really well getting an early goal but never capitalised and Sleights made us pay,” he said.

“We haven’t helped ourselves with two own goals but the lads stuck at it and in the end, we were maybe fortunate to get all three points but I’ll take it at this early point in the season.

“My keeper and back four were superb throughout the game and we look forward to Saturday’s cup encounter with Sleights.”

Sleights 2 Whitby RFC 3