Leigh keep top four hopes alive with Swinton win

Photo courtesy of Richard Long

Leigh could still make the top four after easing past Swinton. 

Toronto Wolfpack, Toulouse Olympique, London Broncos and Halifax are currently in the top four, with the latter three all on 31 points.

Featherstone Rovers and Leigh are fifth and sixth respectively on 30 points. There is one more round of the regular season to be played.

Kieron Purtill made two changes to his Leigh Centurions side that beat Rochdale Hornets last week. Jack Owens and Nathan Mason replaced Ricky Bailey and Ryan Bailey.

Swinton Lions coach Stuart Littler made just one change to his team that lost to Featherstone last week. Aaron Hall came in for Luke Waterworth.

Leigh scored early doors as Harrison Hansen ran a fine line to storm onto a pass from Ben Reynolds. Half-back Reynolds converted to put his side 6-0 up.

In the 13thminute, the ball went through quick hands to Matty Dawson-Jones who found space to dive in the corner for the Centurions. Reynolds added the conversion and they were 12-0 ahead.

Leigh were in again as Reynolds broke the line and assisted the supporting Bodene Thompson.

The Centurions scored their fourth of the afternoon midway through the first half. They scored straight from a scrum as Peter Mata’utia sent Craig Hall flying through a gap to go over. Reynolds’ boot took the score to 24-0.

Dawson-Jones flew down the wing to score his second but Reynolds failed to convert. Leigh led 28-0 after 27 minutes.

Swinton pulled one back though when Josh Barlow crashed over the line from close range. Jack Hansen converted, but they trailed 28-6.

Leigh extended their lead just before the break through Liam Hood. Reynolds added the extras to send his side into the sheds 34-6 to the good.

The Lions came out firing in the second half though. Rob Fairclough threw a cheeky show and go to touch down. Hansen’s conversion attempt was successful.

Swinton scored their third as Wales international Rhodri Lloyd skipped through the Centurions to score. Fairclough added the two points, but they were still 34-18 behind.

Leigh replied with a try in the 52ndminute. Owens made a 60-metre break to assist Hall who crossed the whitewash. Reynolds’ conversion put Leigh 40-18 in front.

The Centurions were in for another as Mata’utia went over following a slick passing play. The conversion was on point and Leigh were 46-18 up.

Littler’s side were still giving it their all in the latter stages and Kyle Shelford latched onto a Fairclough grubber to score.

Hosts Leigh had the final say though. Drew Hutchison took on the line to score from close and seal a 50-24 victory for his side.

Leigh: Mata’utia; Dawson-Jones, Crooks, Hall, Owens; Reynolds, Hutchison; Walne, Hood, Hansen, Larroyer, B Thompson, J Thompson. Subs: Mortimer, Mason, Richards, Blagbrough.

Swinton: Fell; Brown, Lloyd, Tyson, Butt; Fairclough, J Hansen; Bracek, H Hansen, Thornley, Davies, Shelford, Hope. Subs: Ganson, Barlow, Hall, Jones.

Starman: Ben Reynolds was fantastic for Leigh. He created a lot of opportunities in attack and was good with the boot.

Attendance: 3,680

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