SLAITHWAITE Saracens have taken a massive step in their bid to claim the Pennine League Division IV title.
Their hard-fought 10-6 triumph over Sharlston Rovers keeps them in a strong position to finish top of the table.
Saracens have lost just once this season, while Rovers have now lost twice as a result of this defeat.
Second-placed Slaithwaite still face a massive title challenge from leaders Wortley and Whitehall Warriors.
But the nature of this latest victory will have put the Saracens in excellent heart for Saturday's massive home clash against the Warriors.
The contest remained tight throughout, with Sharlston starting the game strongly and taking a fifth-minute lead through a penalty.
But seven minutes later, Slaithwaite took a lead they were never to lose.
Impressive captain Darren Hawkyard, left, made it possible, chipping ahead and following up to score a try, converted by Richard Flooks.
The reliable Flooks then added a penalty to extend the lead before the visitors hit back to leave the game perfectly poised at 8-6 at the break.
In the second half, both sides had chances to win the game, with Flooks and Adam Warner producing quality defensive efforts to keep their opponents at bay.
A 60th-minute penalty from Flooks nudged Slaithwaite further ahead and, ultimately, helped secure a victory in which Hawkyard and man-of-the-match Jason Knapton set a superb example.
They will now look forward to this weekend's clash against Whitehall, who warmed up for the contest with a hard-fought 26-20 triumph at Underbank Rangers.
The home side were always in the running, grabbing tries from Max Berry, Adam Mullen and Jamie Tarazi, and John Birt landing four goals.