Clee Hill 8 pts Bishops Castle 6 pts

BISHOPS Castle kicker Will Beddoes missed a last-gasp penalty as high-flying Clee Hill edged a hard-fought derby in Midlands Four West (North).

The kicker, whose two penalties gave the visitors a 6-5 interval lead, was narrowly off-target with a long-range penalty attempt, said Castle’s Pete Bevan.

“It was a hard penalty attempt for Will on the touchline –and he pulled it narrowly wide of a post.

“Our forwards dug deep and we put in a big performance,” said Bevan.

“We were disappointed because we should have won the match.

“We were on top for long periods, with Keith Evans, Matty Davies, Jamie Brookes, Dave Cooper and Mark Davies all outstanding.”

Bevan added: “We now have to pick ourselves up for this Saturday’s home match against Cleobury.

“We lost narrowly up at Cleobury who scored a try in the last play of the game. Hopefully, we can surprise them this time.”

Castle winger Oscar Shanagher hurt a groin against Hill but is expected to be fit for this weekend’s match.

Hill got off to a flying start in last Saturday’s derby, winger George Evans scoring an unconverted try after a line out saw a driving maul.

The pitch was very wet before the start and got much heavier at the match drew on.

Hill regained the lead midway through the second half when Castle infringed at a ruck and full-back Richard Wozencroft slotted over a penalty.

Hill defended strongly in the closing stages and survived the late penalty attempt from Beddoes.

Hill spokesman Gary Edwards said: “The penalty was close to the halfway line and was never likely to worry the posts.”

Hill will be hoping to maintain their push for the promotion spots when they travel to Herefordshire rivals Bromyard this Saturday.