Hooker Danny Maher bagged a hat-trick of tries as Sedgley Park kicked off the new National Two North campaign with a 38-15 win against Otley.

The Tigers ran in six tries in total at Park Lane for a five-pointy win that delighted coach Steve Hazzelby.

He said: “What a start to the new season a well-deserved win.

“They gained promotion at the end of last season so a hard game was anticipated but we did well as a team.

“A hat-trick was a wonderful achievement for Danny as missed last season after sustaining a ruptured Achilles tendon, but he has worked so hard to get back to match fitness.”

Otley started strongly taking the play to the Tigers and went ahead with a converted penalty after two minutes.

But Sedgley hit back five minutes later with a first try for Maher after a powerful catch and drive from the forwards. Steve Collins added the conversion before Maher grabbed a second try on 10 minutes after another lineout catch-and-drive from the forwards which Otley had no answer to.

The home side’s third score came four minutes later with a hat-trick for Maher after another powerful drive from the forwards and Collins added the conversion to make it 19-3 within the first 15 minutes.

Otley responded and scored a well-worked try of their own to reduce the lead to 19-8 going into half time.

Sedgley started the second half strongly, keeping possession well and it resulted in their fourth and bonus-point try for full-back Rob Holloway who went over in the bottom left corner after kick and accurate passing from the backs. Collins added his third conversion.

Otley responded with a good second try of their own for their right winger after a line break by their inside centre and they added the conversion to get back in the game at 26-15 going into the last 25 minutes.

However, the Tigers raised their game and a powerful line break by the in-form Maher saw the ball moved quickly to the left for winger Andy Riley to touch down in the corner.

They finished the game with a well-worked try for captain Matt Riley before Collins landed his fourth conversion.

On Saturday, Sedgley travel to Chester who lost narrowly 24-19 to Fylde in their opener.