Colne and Nelson 0, Bolton 22
Colne and Nelson hosted North Lancashire First Division side Bolton in the Lancashire plate at Holt House on Saturday.
With Bolton progressing in the division above, and poor weather conditions making things even harder, Colne knew it was going to be a tough encounter.
Both teams started well, with most of the play exchanged centre field until one side could get a foothold on the game. Bolton managed to apply pressure first and gradually edged their way towards the Colne try line, but great defence from Alex Wood and Andrew Grinrod kept them out.
Bolton reapplied the pressure onto the Colne defence, using the wind to give them the extra distance on their kicks, and a well-rehearsed backs move left the winger enough space to cross the white wash.
The restart saw the home side start to progress into the Bolton half of the field and apply pressure to the back line, with Luke Edwards leading the charge and close support by Jack Wiper and Dan Sutcliffe drawing in the Bolton defence. As the ball was sent out to the wing, Jack Handforth had a clear run, but the wind caught the ball, sending it just beyond his reach and into touch. Bolton then managed to clear their lines and work their way up field, and the Bolton centre charged over just before half-time.
In the second half Colne had the wind advantage, and used it to pin Bolton in their half, and Colne felt comfortable enough to make a few changes and play some young players from their development side, with Adam Berry making an impact as flanker and Jim Tunney putting in a great debut performance in the back line.
With the torrential rain and wind battering the players, both teams found the going tough, but the All Blacks gave as good as they got and continued to apply pressure, putting in the hard work through the forwards of Dan Frazer and Mark Britcliffe at second row.
With conditions getting worse, both sides made mistakes and Colne missed a few good opportunities to get on the scoreboard, with Jordan Sunderland making good ground and Callum Kinnane directing the pack well, but Bolton returned the favour and some good hands and a slip up in the defence left a gap to score out wide.
Bolton managed to cross over again in the dying stages with a gifted try as Colne struggled, and the referee deemed it too dangerous to carry on with 10 minutes left.
Colne are back in league action tomorrow at fifth place Newton le Willows.