BURNLEY won a vital match at Holden Road last Saturday, securing a 33-0 bonus point victory against Windemere.
In a scrappy first half, Burnleys enthusiasm in the opening exchanges meant they fell foul of Durham Society referee Kevin Lund, who penalised them on several occasions.
Frustration boiled over and Burnley lost Ben Healey to the sin bin.
This ill discipline allowed the visitors to gain good field position, pinning Burnley back, using their heavier forwards at close quarters.
Burnley’s scrum competed well and provided some quality ball, and the Holden Road men probed, but a physical Windemere defence snuffed out early opportunities.
After 23 minutes, a good pick up by Jack Stockdale fed Simon Finnan, who jinked and fed Richard Murray, who linked well with Matt Crowley, who sprinted in from 30 yards.
Burnley thereafter struggled to crack a resolute Windemere defence and kept being penalised.
Late in the half, Mark Hanson bravely pounced on a hacked through ball, Burnley won the ruck, and more importantly a penalty, and kicked to touch. Murray won the lineou andt fed Finnan, who passed to the charging skipper Nino Angelone, who was tackled just short of the lineout.
Burnley led 5-0 at half-time.
The second half started in a similar scrappy fashion as Windemere sought confrontation.
Burnley took off Josh Brown for Matt Calvert and the fresh legs helped immediately.
Quick ball at last led to Finnan breaking and feeding Luke Smith into space, and against a tiring defence he ran under the posts, the try converted by Dom Leck.
Shortly after, Windemere’s fly half was dismissed for foul play. Burnley now had more room to work with, and made full use of the extra space.
A great chase by Crowley led to Burnley winning a penalty. Quick ball by Finnan led to Murray scoring, converted by Leck. More quick ball from a dominant scrum led to good interpassing from Billy Lancaster, who fed Crowley, who returned the pass, and Lancaster ran 20 yards to score under the posts, converted by Leck. With 10 minutes to go, Crowley ran from deep inside his half, and in a fantastic run, scored under the posts for his second, which was again converted by Leck.
Burnley seconds did the double when they won a nail-biting 12-10 victory at Preston. Ryan Bradley and Matt Maquis were the scorers, and Gus Ferguson added a conversion. Rob O Brien was man of the match.