Morley RFC had their first full pre-season run out when they took on Leeds Beckett University on Saturday.
This was a rearranged match as the intended opponents, Bowden, were unable to raise a team due to injuries and unavailability and it proved to be a stern test, with the result drifting away in the second half as Morley gave players from both the Cavaliers and Saxons a chance to impress.
Morley started strongly with new signings Mark Chivers and Chris Lound to the fore, keeping possession for the first 10 minutes. But, somewhat against the run of pay, Beckett opened the scoring from a turnover.
Morley were not disheartened by this and a try from Declan Brereton and a superb team try with Richard Knowles adding the finishing touch put them 10-7 ahead.
This was as good as it got for the hosts, though, and as they lost structure, the fitter, faster rugby students took control and ended the first half on top.
The second half was dominated by Leeds Beckett as Morley rotated the squad, but there were positive signs from debutants Mark Chivers (prop/hooker), Chris Lound (centre), Callum Rodgers (6/8), Tim Pickersgill (2/7), Josh Bird (scrum-half), and Oli Stanford (wing).
The Maroons are building towards the start of the season proper on Saturday, September 2 when they host Lymm in the first National Three North game. Kick-off will be 3pm and it will be a community match with free entry.