Richmond Buck beat Mavs to win season-opening Champions Cup

The Wensleydale Creamery League got underway on Saturday with the league champions, Richmond Mavericks, taking on the Dales Cup winners Richmond Buck in the Champions Cup.

The league’s equivalent of the Charity Shield, played at Carperby, was a repeat of the epic Dales Cup final which Buck won 3-2.

And the two Richmond teams fought out another memorable game.

It took a while for the Buck to get into their stride and they found it hard to compete as Mavs who were quicker out of the blocks and enjoyed sustained pressure in the opening half hour.

Mavs’ pressure paid off when Andrew Pritchard went round Buck keeper Liam Ryan who clipped him for a penalty.

Pritchard dispatched the penalty himself with Ryan getting his finger tips to the ball diving to his left, but failing to keep it out.

Buck felt they should have had a penalty of their own soon after when David Addison showed great footwork in the box, trying to prize an opening for himself before going down feeling like he was clipped but the ref waved away the appeals.

Buck had seen off most of the Mavs onslaught and began to create more of their own chances with Stewart Fotheringham having about the best of them with a clear opening, but his shot was blocked.

Mavericks enjoyed further possession and perhaps should of gone in at half time two to the good, but after Ryan saved well from Pritchard, with Reuben Bainbridge failing to steer the ball home.

In the second half Buck were able to play in their pacey forwards Marshal Thorogood and Connor Metcalfe, and began to create more counter attacks.

It was Thorogood who eventually got Buck level after a route one free kick from keeper Liam Ryan found Danny Allen in the box who squared the ball to Thorogood to finish on 70 minutes.

Mavs felt the ball had been claimed by new keeper Ethan Lansdell and felt the Buck striker had kicked the ball from his hands, but the goal stood.

Mavs had a close range free kick blocked after a back pass was handled by Ryan and were looking the more likely to win it late on.

However, David Addison’s quality through ball released Thorogood on 87 minutes and he found a great finish into the bottom corner to remind the Buck supporters of their late winner four months ago.

This time they held on for the win without any self-destructive late, late drama to lift their second ever piece of silverware.