Rock bottom Dewsbury Rams cast further adrift at bottom of Championship after York deliver ruthless display

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Dewsbury Rams have been cast further adrift at the bottom of the Championship table after York Knights - their nearest rivals for the dreaded drop - delivered a ruthless display at FLAIR Stadium.

Two Dewsbury mistakes in as many minutes were punished by an unforgiving York outfit before a sensational double from Joseph Brown gave the visitors a commanding 18-0 lead at the break. Jimmy Keinhorst extended the advantage within seconds of the restart before Mafoa’Aeata Hingano, with his second of the afternoon, Jordan Thompson and Ukuma Taai ensured a 40-0 thrashing to leave the Rams rock bottom.

We’re only into week 11 of 26 of the league campaign but you could not underestimate the sense of importance surrounding this fixture as 14th placed Dewsbury looked to reduce the gap at the bottom to 13th placed York to just two points.

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As it turned out, York have now jumped up to ninth and have joined four other teams on eight points, leaving Paul March’s men with a thoroughly treacherous uphill task to avoid an instant relegation back to League 1 after their title-winning season in 2023.

Reiss Butterworth in action for Dewsbury Rams against York Knights. Photo by Thomas Fynn.Reiss Butterworth in action for Dewsbury Rams against York Knights. Photo by Thomas Fynn.
Reiss Butterworth in action for Dewsbury Rams against York Knights. Photo by Thomas Fynn.

Both sides’ lowly status’ was clear to see in the opening minutes as a succession of errors occurred with York firstly being caught offside before Matt Garside lost possession when the Rams were in a decent position 20 metres out.

The Knights then got into some handy territory themselves on the right but Keinhorst knocked on. The Rams, in keeping with the nervy start though, gifted the ball straight back to the visitors and they were nearly punished through Will Jubb but he was held up on the line.

They didn’t have to wait long, however, for the game’s first try. And it came from a Rams error. Owen Restall raced clear down the left but the pass into him was adjudged to have been thrown forward. And it proved to be costly as, in the very next set, Bradley Ward scored after great work by Jubb.

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The score was quickly extended as another Rams mistake resulted in another York try. A wayward pass was gleefully intercepted by Hingano, who could not believe his luck to race clear. The boot of Will Dagger, who only kicked three out of a possible seven conversions, made it 10-0.

FLAIR Stadium, home of Dewsbury Rams.FLAIR Stadium, home of Dewsbury Rams.
FLAIR Stadium, home of Dewsbury Rams.

The Rams rallied with Curtis Davies making good progress through the middle before Jack Billington, one of three Huddersfield Giants helping out on dual registration terms, was stopped just before the line.

York were proving difficult to break down and lethal in attack. And that was demonstrated further when the excellent Brown scored for the fifth game in succession with a wonderful solo effort. There just didn’t seem to be any space on the right hand side for the in-form winger but he somehow conjured some, magically, before touching down

Brown made it a double for himself before the hooter. Another Dewsbury mistake, another York try. A familiar tale for the afternoon. The Rams were on the front foot with Ollie Greensmith but after he knocked on, Brown picked up the loose ball inside his own ten metres to sprint clear.

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Perhaps the half-time score of 0-18 shouldn’t have been a shock. York had won their previous six meetings against Dewsbury, who are the lowest scorers in the league and have a defence which is leakier than the dark, brooding rain clouds that have occupied the skies above West Yorkshire over these last few weeks.

Such clouds had cleared for this clash as the sun was certainly shining on the visitors who extended their lead right at the start of the second half as Keinhorst pounced on a loose ball with the barest of fingertips.

Reiss Butterworth, who is back at the Rams in a loan move from Hull KR, was proving to be the home team’s brightest spark. He produced a smart pass to seemingly get Dewsbury forward but the very next pass went straight out of play. It just summed their day up.

Hingano went over for his second of the afternoon after a great stretch. York were stretching their lead and the gap between themselves and the Rams at the bottom.

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There was still time for Thompson to power over and for Taai to spot a gap as Dewsbury’s miserable start to the season continued.

Dewsbury: O’Connor, Carr, Graham, Greensmith, Restall, Turner, Rush, Beckett, Davies, Dixon, Billiington, Garside, Collinson

Interchanges: Butterworth, Bibby, Hird, Morris

York: Dagger, Brown, Williams, Keinhorst, Ward, Hingano, Harris, Taai, Jubb, Fitzsimmons, Bailey, Field, Thompson

Interchanges: Teanby, Santi, Daley, Cook

Tries: Ward, Hingano (2), Brown (2), Keinhorst, Thompson, Taai

Conversions: Dagger (4)

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