The Championship Chat: Round 9

Oldham and Sheffield triumph

The Roughyeds faced off against Batley Bulldogs while Sheffield Eagles went head to head with Bradford Bulls. Oldham, with a resolute defence on their side, came out on top 28-12 as Lewis Palfrey starred for the hosts. Jamel Chisholm bagged a brace while Sam Gee, Richard Lepori and Liam Johnson all got on the scoresheet too. Batley could only muster a penalty goal from Pat Walker in the first half before Wayne Reittie and Tom Lillycrop added consolation scores late in the second period. Meanwhile, over in West Yorkshire, Sheffield got back to winning ways in style by beating Bradford 46-28. Ryan Millar scored twice for the Eagles and Garry Lo came up with the try of the game as the opposition couldn’t stop him from registering a length of the field effort. Prop forward Mark Mexico was a menace all game for the steel city side with his strong running style and good offloading game. If the Eagles can start putting a good run of results together then they will be back in the race for a top four finish. They’ve got Oldham to get past in round 10, though.

Centurions gain breathing space at top of the tree

With results going their way on Sunday, it was a good job Leigh performed professionally on their way to a 40-18 victory over Dewsbury Rams at the Tetley’s Stadium. The Centurions were only 12-8 up at the break but a strong second half performance, despite having two men sent to the sin-bin during the final 40 minutes, granted them a comfortable win. Sam Hopkins kept up his impressive scoring record for the year with two tries in the first half before second half scores from Adam Higson, Ben Reynolds, Liam Kay and Richard Whiting created more than enough breathing space for the Centurions to work in. Dewsbury’s tries in the match came courtesy of Luke Adamson, Dale Morton and Jack Teanby. Leigh are now two points clear of the chasing pack at the top of the Championship table.

Halifax edge all-Yorkshire battle

There was a dramatic finish at the Big Fellas Stadium on Sunday when Halifax kicked a last minute penalty goal to beat Featherstone Rovers 20-19. John Davies was penalised near to his own sticks for offside and Steve Tyrer coolly slotted over a penalty goal to steal the win. Former Rover Sam Smeaton scored two tries on his return to Featherstone in an Halifax jersey. For Featherstone, it was dual-registered halfback Jordan Lilley who took centre stage with a few important kicks to, initially, draw the game and then put his side in front. Lilley kicked a penalty goal to draw the game 18-18 before nailing a go-ahead drop goal. It looked like Jon Sharp’s men were going to pick up a brilliant result before they were cruelly denied anything from the tie due to Tyrer’s penalty goal.

Swinton narrowly see off Workington

In a game between two sides who have been struggling in the Championship, Swinton Lions won their second match on the trot as they beat Workington Town 26-22 at Heywood Road. The Lions were 20-10 up at the break after tries from Gabriel Fell, Stuart Littler, Rhodri Lloyd and Liam Marshall. Workington’s four pointers came thanks to Jack Murphy and Chris Murphy. Within seven minutes of the restart, Workington had turned the game on its head and went two points to the good through tries from Graeme Mattinson and Jarrod Sammut. However, the last try to be scored in the tie was the decisive one. Chris Atkin notched the winner with just over ten minutes of the game to go and it could turn out to be a very important win for Swinton in the long-run. Their confidence will now be sky-high and they will be looking forward to their next challenge which comes against Halifax on Sunday.

Postponed game – Whitehaven v London Broncos

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