It was always going to be a difficult fixture for an understrength Tynedale Centurions side as they visited a well-prepared and in-form Rockcliff team.

The task was made even trickier on a magnificent artificial pitch to which the home team were accustomed, with the final score of 62-10 reflecting that.

The opening 10 minutes saw both sides make progress, but full-back Adam Shane and centre Rory Dixon had to make try-saving tackles as Rockcliff always appeared more threatening.

The Centurions made progress via Adam Todhunter’s astute tactical kicking with excellent kick chase from the rampaging Oliver Hillary and Jacob Brown causing problems but they never really threatened to score.

Then, in a 20-minute period, the floodgates opened as the home side forwards and backs combined beautifully to score four well-worked tries.

Just before half time, the Tynedale forwards were able to apply pressure and had six or seven attempts to drive over as Rory Craney and Josh Turnbull were held within inches from the line. The ball was lost and the opposition’s razor sharp backs ran in a magnificent try from behind their own line.

This setback caused the Centurions to redouble their efforts and, from a scrum near the 10-metre line, scrum half Jake Sloan broke and fed Todhunter who ran strongly and, despite receiving three tacklers on the five-metre line, managed to force his way over for a well deserved score to leave the score at half time, 33-5.

After the break, Rockcliff grabbed five more tries, pouncing on handling errors as the visitors desperately tried to run any scraps from defence and even strolling through a line out at the end as tired bodies ran out of steam.

The Centurions fought with spirit, but came up against a slick, skilled outfit who showed why they are top of the second team league.