Thursday, 24 September 2015

Super 8s-The Qualifiers Round Six Review

As only Hull KR had confirmed their place in next year's Super League, the remaining three places were up for grabs as the competition entered round six with just one further side sealing their place ahead of the final round.

Eagles Excite As Robins Rise

Friday's round opener at Bramall Lane saw Sheffield Eagles host already 'promoted' Hull Kingston Rovers as the Eagles looked to boost their hopes of reaching the Million Pound Game.

The Eagles made the better start of the two sides with Eddie Battye scoring the first try inside six minutes which Pat Walker converted for 6-0. The Robins reply took until the 21st minute as Ken Sio crossed for 6-4 but they were ahead with five minutes left of the half as Maurice Blair touched down and Kieran Dixon converted for 10-6. The Eagles were unfortunate to go into the interval ten points behind at 16-6 as Sio claimed his second try with Dixon converting in the final minute. 

Quentin Laulu-Togagae cut the gape for the hosts within four minutes of the restart with Dominic Brambani converting for 16-12 but the 10 point gap was restored when Sio completed his hat-trick and Dixon converted for 22-12. Ryan Millar replied for the Eagles with Brambani converting for a second time at 22-18 before Adam Walker scored on the hour mark (Dixon conv) for a 28-18 lead with Kris Welham adding a try within a minute for 32-18.

Matty Marsh looked to have sealed the win for the Robins with ten minutes left with his effort converted by Dixon for 38-18 but the Eagles battled on and close the gap to 10 as Millar ran in two tries to complete his hat-trick with the latter converted by Walker for a 38-28 final score. 

Centurions Curtailed By Brilliant Bulls

Saturday's huge clash came at Leigh Sports Village as Leigh Centurions hosted Bradford Bulls with both sides looking to boost their chances of reaching the Million Pound Game at the very least in their bid for promotion from the Championship.

The Bulls made a perfect start as they struck inside three minutes through Jake Mullaney for a 4-0 lead before doubling the lead to 8-0 on the half hour mark as Danny Williams scored and with Danny Addy converting the score moved to 10-0. Leigh fought back and were on the board just before the interval as Adam Higson touched down before Greg McNally cut the gap further with Ryan Brierley converting to send the sides level into the interval at 10-10.

Bradford were back in front within seven minutes of the restart as Williams claimed his second try with Addy converting for 16-10 before adding a penalty just before the hour mark for 18-10. Leigh were in danger of being cut adrift as Matty Blythe crossed for the Bulls with Addy converting before adding a penalty four minutes later for a 26-10 advantage. 

Leigh continued in the hunt as Bob Beswick (Brierley conv) cut the gap to 10 points but it proved to be in vain as Blythe claimed his second try in the final minuted which Addy converted for a 32-16 triumph which ended the Centurions hopes of reaching Super League next year. 


Wondrous Wildcats Halt Halifax

Saturday evening saw Wakefield Wildcats host Halifax at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium with both still in the hunt for the Million Pound Game after reasonable campaign's so far in the 8s.

Wakefield started well as they opened up a 6-0 lead inside 8 minutes with a try from Michael Sio converted by Joe Arundel but 'Fax replied rapidly with a try from Jake Eccleston which as converted by Steve Tyrer to level at 6-6. Two tries in six minutes after the half hour mark put the hosts in control as Sio claimed his second try ahead of an effort from Mickael Simon with Arundel converting both for 18-6 at the interval. 

Arundel extended the lead to 14 at 20-6 with a 52nd minute penalty before Anthony Mullally boosted their lead further on 68 minutes with Arundel converting for 26-6. Halifax reached double figures with three minutes remaining as Scott Murrell touches down with Tyrer converting for 6-12 but int proved to be only a consolation as Max Jowiit pushed the hosts towards 30 points which as reached with Arundel's conversion for a 30-12 finish.

Vikings Vanquish By Rising Red Devils

Sunday saw the round come to an end at the Select Security Stadium as Widnes Vikings hosted Salford Red Devils with both sides looking to secure their Super League status for next year.

Salford raced out of the blocks as Josh Griffin opened the scoring inside two minutes for 4-0 before Micheal Dobson added a penalty for 6-0 in the seventh minute. Widnes got off the mark on 13 minutes through Patrick Ah Van for 6-4 before Scott Taylor (Dobson conv) touched down for 12-4 ahead of a try from Cory Paterson (Dobson conv) which set up an 18-4 lead into the interval.

Junior Sa'u extended the lead with a try within three minutes of the restart which Dobson converted for 24-4 before Widnes reached double figures with a try from Lloyd White which Ah Van converted for 24-10. The match ended with both sides down to 12 as Josh Griffin and Kevin Brown were sent off late on as Salford secured a 24-10 victory which guarantees their return to Super League next season.