BOLTON began the new year delighted with their derby-day double-sealing win against De La Salle.

The Cherry and Whites came away from their local rivals with the points after a narrow 14-13 victory, to add to their 23-17 home win in September.

Not that the success, by the narrowest of margins, came without some nerve-shredding moments. Della could have kicked a match-winning penalty in the final few moments but, inexplicably, opted to run the ball and Bolton’s defence held out to seal the win.

And head coach Dave Crouch was perplexed but grateful their hosts chose to go for broke.

“They made the wrong decision with that penalty,” he said. “It was just outside our 22 so it was kickable and would have put them two points ahead, so thank you to them for that!

“Wins are wins, however close it was. It was a really hard game, there was no quarter given. We gave them one try but their other try was a really good one. We hadn’t played for four weeks but I think we got back into our stride quite quickly.

“We’re just pleased to get the win, it’s always nice to beat Della, and doing the double is even better.”

It was a youthful Bolton side that took the field in Salford and there were starring roles for Lewis Lockett, who made three penalties after taking on kicking duties, and winger Josh Holmes produced a brilliant individual effort for their only try of the afternoon.

Open-side flanker Ben Cottam was their man-of-the-match for his powerful pack play while Crouch admits the return of Gaz Pritchard at number eight was a huge boost for Bolton, who sit 10th in the table ahead of hosting Oldham this Saturday.

“Josh is one of those who have come up from the second team,” he said. “He’s only 19 but there’s a lot of potential there. He’s got a lovely sidestep, good pace and he’s a powerful runner.

“He was tackled before the line but managed to stretch just far enough to reach over the line and score.

“We knew Lewis could kick and he performed really well too, he’s normally an inside centre but did well at fly-half for us.

“Chris Brownlow played his first game and he is another young lad who made the step up.

“I looked at the team sheet from when we lost at Oldham and there were only six players from the team that played then. I feel we’re stronger now and even though we had amazing support at Della and those who made the trip really enjoyed their day out we’re looking forward to getting back home.

“We owe Oldham one, so hopefully we can send them away after beating them.”