Aspatria’s 43-8 win over Tarleton did not improve their position in North Two West.

They remain in sixth but the five points put further distance between them and the final relegation slot currently occupied by Bolton.

Assuming the league programme is concluded, there are only four games remaining and the 15 points difference between Aspatria and Bolton is surely enough to guarantee safety for the Cumbrians.

Tarleton had the upper hand in the early stages of the game but simply could not capitalise as scoring opportunities presented themselves.

The first five minutes of the game were played on the Aspatria try line as the hosts, playing into a stiff wind, could not find a way to exit the 22.

The escape eventually did come courtesy of a bruising run from prop Jack Gaskell, and when play transferred deep into Tarleton territory a penalty was earned which Jack Clegg knocked over.

Tarleton again moved play close to the Aspatria line, but despite hogging the majority of possession the visitors proved incapable of opening up the home defence which was ruthlessly efficient.

With the game moving into the second quarter Aspatria began to show more attacking intent.

On 28 minutes winger Alex Barton and centre Joe Beaty chased down a speculative kick to earn the home side a lineout on the Tarleton 22.

This field position handed the Black Reds a rare attacking opportunity and they did not waste it.

Chaos in the Tarleton defence led to a penalty, and Clegg immediately seized the ball, tapped and headed to the line. The scrum half was stopped short, but not before getting a pass away to onrushing back rower Jamie Lightfoot who charged over the line for the first try.

On 33 minutes Tarleton hit back with a penalty, but overall momentum had visibly shifted in favour of Aspatria and just before half time they were able to extend the lead.

Again, the starting point was a tap penalty five metres out and when second row Matthew Atkinson came on to the ball he was unstoppable.

Aspatria’s 15-3 half-time advantage did not last long as Tarleton started the second 40 in positive fashion, and with only three minutes gone had mauled the ball over the try line to cut the deficit.

Hope in the Tarleton ranks soon evaporated as Aspatria resumed control, and on 48 minutes registered a third try.

A penalty put Aspatria in the corner and in position to launch a catch and drive move. The initial charge was halted by Tarleton but James Ravell came onto the ball at speed to surge over, with Clegg converting.

All the play compacted into the Tarleton 22, and on 58 minutes they basically ran out of defenders as a wall of black and red charged at the line. The solitary Tarleton defender had little option but to illegally prevent the killer pass but in doing so earned a yellow card and conceded a penalty try.

Aspatria looked certain of the win but Tarleton were not about to acknowledge that point, but in the face of some robust Aspatria defending they just could not deliver the final blow.

Frustration crept into the Tarleton ranks and querying refereeing decisions became an unwelcome factor.

On 70 minutes the man in the middle had heard enough and produced a yellow card, which allowed Aspatria to finish the game in style.

With only a few minutes left on the clock Aspatria moved towards the posts courtesy of a 20 metre dart by Clegg.

His run was followed up by centre Ryan Scott who split the defensive line wide open. Scott could not go all the way but Patrick Noutch had come off his left wing position and took the pass to go over.

Arguably the try of the game came with the last move of the contest. It was a simple handling deception by Clegg under the posts that moved waiting defenders slightly out of position.

But it was anticipated by Ravell, who took the reverse pass at pace to crash over for his second of the day and finish the scoring.