For some weeks now........

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.............Joseph Robson of Grayrigg has held back from wrestling after a shoulder injury at Sedbergh Gala took him to hospital for a check-up. Last Saturday was the big test, as his 15st World Championship was open to all-comers at Kirkheaton, a tiny Northumbrian village well lost in rolling stock-country.

Northumberland was an appropriate area for the championship as they have some big lads well capable of lifting the trophy. Robson’s first task was to deal with a lightweight from Carlisle Wrestling Club. Richard Dixon is capable of winning against heavier opposition, but Robson kept him under close control, lifted him high, kicked out the hank and landed him on his back.

A bye in the next round allowed Robson to watch his Northumbrian rivals at work before meeting them in the finals. Robert Leiper twice back-heeled James Oliver who learned his wrestling at Rothbury, but now lives near Hawick. Jason Davidson put paid to Alan Jones’s latest foray from retirement with a swiping outside hipe.

The semi-final brought Robson and Leiper together and the powerful Northumbrian took the first fall. Leiper went on the offensive again in the second with a back-heel, but Robson wriggled out of it and twisted. Having weathered the storm, Robson went more on the attack and caught Leiper with a neat outside-stroke.

The final brought him against the Rothbury coach, Jason Davidson, who had weighed in with little to spare. Davidson went for hold and a lift and Robson was lucky to turn his man with a cross-click and land with Davidson’s leg under him. Once more Davidson  went for his chips and lifted Robson high on an inside-hipe, but Robson slipped off it, regained his feet and twisted strongly to win.


John Harrington was by far the most successful wrestler of the week-end for he had a win at 12 stones at Kirkheaton, and was unbeaten at Silloth the next day when he won at 11½st, 13st and All Weights. At both venues he lost his first falls. At Kirkheaton Andrew Carlile gave him his wake-up call when he squirmed free from a buttock, and at Silloth David Barnes scored with a series of non-stop moves which ended with a cross-click. Harrington’s great quality is to read a situation and change it to his advantage, so that in subsequent bouts he is always fractionally ahead of the opposition, able to ride and counter any attack.

The other wrestler with wins at both venues was James Oliver who was a long way from his Hawick home on both occasions. At Kirkheaton he felled Ross Wilkinson in straight falls in the final of the Under 18 Years; and at Silloth he had a ding-dong battle with Jack Ewart before winning.



Under 12 Years 1, C Ash; 2, O Rankin; 3, C Whitfield.

Under 15 Years 1, J Hale; 2, J Wragg; 3, J Brown.

Under 18 Years 1, J Oliver; 2, R Wilkinson; 3, J Hale.

12st 1, John Harrington; 2, R Suddes; 3, A Carlile.

15st World Championship 1, J Robson; 2, J Davidson; 3, R Leiper.

All Weights 1, J Davidson; 2, J Robson; 3, John Harrington.

Silloth Vintage Rally

Under 12 Years 1, K Miller; 2, J Dixon; 3, J Bradbury.

Under 15 Years 1, C Ridley; 2, J Thompson; 3, D Ewart.

Under 18 Years 1, J Oliver; 2, J Ewart; 3, C Ridley

11½st 1, John Harrington; 2, C Ridley; 3, R Dixon.

13st 1, John Harrington; 2, D Barnes; 3, R Dixon.

AW 1, John Harrington; 2, D Barnes; 3, M Fisher.


June 24th  (Sun)   2pm   Patterdale Lakeland Fair                                       U12/U15/U18/11½/13/AW

July 1st  (Sun)    Langdale Gala


July 7th    (Sat)     Alston Gala

July 8th    (Sun)     Haltwhistle

July 11th  (Wed)   Plumbland

Written by © Roger Robson. Photographs by © Roger Robson, Julian Richardson or Linda Scott (February 10th 2011)


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