In sunny, mild conditions Northern kicked off down the slope with the wind and sun behind them and were on the scoreboard after 5 minutes when good forward play gained possession in the Horden 22 where the ball was recycled and moved through the hands to full back David Bloxham who evaded the defence and touched down for a try that scrum half Sam Storey converted. Northern scored a further try on 7 minutes when the ball was kicked long and following a good chase the ball was turned over and passed to prop Ian Brierley who powered over for a try, converted by scrum half Sam Storey. Northern added to their lead when scrum half Sam Storey kicked a penalty on 10 minutes after Horden had infringed at the ruck. Northern took their foot of the gas and Horden started to play however they only managed a penalty attempt on 20 minutes which missed. Northern came back and on 23 minutes from a Northern scrum in the Horden half the ball was moved through the hands quickly to Matt Brown who put full back David Bloxham away he glided through the defence for a fine try , converted by scrum half Sam Storey. Unfortunately, at this point the referee, who had been poor at the break down up to now decided to even up the game by penalising Northern at every opportunity and on 30 minutes he harshly sin-binned prop Ian Brierley for ‘hands in the ruck’ even though he appeared to have legally stripped the ball in the tackle. Horden tapped from the penalty 5 metres out and drove over for a converted try. Northern were down to 14 men and had lost their front row replacement through injury so hung on with uncontested scrums without conceding another score but lost prop Ian Birtwhistle on 40 minutes when the referee sin-binned him for what was at best a penalty offence. Half time score: Northern Wanderers24–Horden7.
The second half resumed with Northern still down to 14 men as prop Ian Brierley returned. Horden kicking with the elements immediately pressed Northern back into their 22 and contained them until the 43rd minute when they were given a strange penalty 5 metres out after the tackled Horden player was clearly holding onto the ball. Horden tapped and drove over for their second converted try. Things got worse for Northern when from the re-start second row Paddy Douglas was rightly sin-billed for challenging for the ball with a dangerous Kung Fu kick leaving the team down to 13 players. Northern hung on until prop Ian Birtwhistle returned but Horden pressure was rewarded with another converted try on 51 minutes from a 5 metre scrum when their number 8 picked up and drove over. Northern were briefly back to a full complement however, on 55 minutes following a panicked clearance kick, skipper Peter Allsop instinctively caught the ball in front of the kicker believing it had been touched in flight and was unbelievably sin-binned for the offence. Horden kicked the penalty to tie the game. The 14 Northern players showed good spirit with stand-in skipper Ian Brierley leading from the front and scored a super try on 58 minutes when great hands from the backs put wing David Reah over in the corner. The conversion into the wind was just short making the lead 5 points. Northern hung on until the 63rd minute when indecision in their 22 resulted in another 5m scrum and Horden were again able to pick up and drive over for an unconverted try to tie the game. Horden were well on top at this point and despite good first up Northern defence Horden were able to work the ball wide through their backs and scored a converted try on 74 minutes. Northern showing great resolve attacked from the re-start and the ball was spun wide by the backs to centre Matt Brown who scored a classic try in the corner. The difficult kick was missed leaving Northern 2 points adrift. Horden kicked long from the re-start and pinned Northern back in their own half until the 78th minute when they scored another converted try. With time running out Northern came back at Horden and managed a good team try when open side John Dean-Laws finished the move by powering over for a try on time which was converted by scrum half Sam Story to give Northern 2 bonus points.