BARROW Island were the only winners in a bad day at the office for the area’s amateur rugby league teams as the 2019 season got under way for real on Saturday.

With cup matches having dominated in recent weeks, the first weekend in March saw a full programme of fixtures in the National Conference League and North West Men’s League.

Island, who won promotion to Division Two of the Conference last year, were on top form as they overcame East Leeds 36-6 at Rating Lane, having led 18-6 at the break.

Blain Marwood marked his return from injury in spectacular manner, leading the way with two tries for the home side.

Island’s others tries came from Josh Banham, Matt Parkinson, Peter Rimmer and Adam Jackson, who added six goals as well.

Hindpool Tigers opted to drop into the second division of the North West Men’s League for the 2019 season.

However, life did not get any easier as they went down 24-0 to a strong Chorley Panthers side at Brisbane Park.

Chorley came out firing on all cylinders going ahead with an early unconverted try through hooker Alfie Bowers.

Grant Burns went close for the Tigers prior to him being unable to deal with a through the cover which resulted in Nathan Blaimare scoring an unconverted try to extend the Panther’s lead

Impressive Panthers full-back Joshua Rourke raced in from half way before Luke Adamson crashed over, followed by Rourke adding one goal to make it 18-0.

The Tigers almost opened their account, only for Ryan Mason to be bundled into touch on the flag.

At the other end, Connor McDermott covered 65 yards to prevent a try, but then Rourke added a second to which he converted to close the half with the visitors holding a 24-0 lead.

Hindpool got their act together in the second half with good defensive work to keep a clean sheet, aided by the heavy pitch.

There was no joy for Walney Central as they began life in the Premier Division, with Cents going down 26-10 at Halton Farnworth.

The away side’s tries came from Matty Holmes and George Nichols, who added one goal as well.

Roose Pioneers lost on their return to the NWML, going down 28-8 at home to Spring View in the Divison Three season-opener. Henry Atwell and Glen Kaighan both went over for unconverted tries.

Askam look like being in for a tough season ahead after failing to score at West Bowling who ran in 72 points.

Millom and Drillington were drawing 6-6 at the break in their National Conference League Divison Three clash, only for the Woolybacks to lose 36-6 with Jordan Moyes touching down and Ross Brooks converting.

Meanwhile, Ulverston were left without a game in the NWML after scheduled opponents Oldham St Annes A failed to raise a team.