A RENEWAL at Winnington Park, while in its early stages, is most definitely under way.

They were not at their best last weekend, and have work to do, but a decisive late try by captain Dave Cross on his return from a long-term injury was a cathartic moment.

After five successive victories, they sit second in South Lancs/Cheshire Division Two.

“We’re getting better,” reflected head coach Matt Farr afterwards.

“But that consistency we’re looking for isn’t there yet – we need to make sure we play to our potential for a whole game.”

Dreadful conditions, combined with resolute hosts, made that difficult on Saturday.

However Winnington adjusted better despite starting slowly.

Didsbury fly-half Seb Sheratte’s clever pass released full-back Rory Gibson, and he crossed the whitewash in the corner.

Their guests responded, and Cameron Flanagan landed a penalty to make it 5-3.

Alex Glendinning then touched down a first Park try after a powerful driving maul following a lineout.

Flanagan’s added the extras.

Park’s back-row again shone, turning over possession regularly at the breakdown to prevent their opponents from building any attacking momentum.

They created chances too when they moved the ball.

The visitors kicked tactically to gain ground on an afternoon when persistent rain made playing more expansively too much of a risk.

Winnington piled on the pressure early in the second period, but were repelled by their hosts’ defence.

Didsbury rallied, and wing Dave Hoare went over between the posts to level the scores.

A successful conversion put them in front at 12-10 before Flanagan slotted another three-pointer.

Park had to absorb pressure though, and they were relieved after Hoare and Joe Bulbeck failed to make the most of Rob Bamberger’s poke to the corner.

A sloppy pass then brought to an end another attack when they had an overlap.

They were made to pay when Cross, on as a second-half replacement, crashed over at the end of a spell during which his teammates had been camped deep inside Didsbury’s half.

It leaves them two points adrift of pacesetting Liverpool Collegiate ahead of a visit from sixth-placed Orrell this Saturday, kick-off 3pm.

Park | Taylor, Robins, Underdown, Snowden, Hallworth, Treacy, Danny Williams, Glendinning, Jack Williams, Flanagan, Ryan Williams, Johnson, Critchley, Allmark, Sheppard Replacements Moran, Evans, Dave Cross, Pugh Try Glendinning, Cross Cons Flanagan (2) Pens Flanagan (2)