Widnes Vikings, Select Security Stadium Halton, Lower House Lane, Widnes, Cheshire, WA8 7DZ
Thursday 9th June 2016, 20:00
Super League - Round: 18
Paddy Flynn 3, Larne Patrick, Luke Gale,
MacGraff Leuluai, Patrick Ah Van 2, Chris Bridge, Lloyd White 2, Joe Mellor,
Luke Gale 4,
Rhys Hanbury 5,
Attendance: 4,968 Official: J Smith Venue: The Mend-A-Hose Jungle
Full Time Report
Paddy Flynn scored a hat-trick against his parent club but could not prevent Castleford Tigers slipping to defeat against Widnes Vikings.
Castleford are now just a point ahead of the Vikings, who strengthened their top-eight bid with only a second win in 11 First Utility Super League games.
The Tigers had a let-off when Denny Solomona's knock-on in the tackle appeared to gift a try to Widnes captain Kevin Brown only for replays to indicate a double knock-on.
Another fumble from Junior Moors enabled Magraff Leuluai to follow up Brown's kick for the game's first try.
Rhys Hanbury added the conversion and then produced a sublime cut-out pass to get winger Patrick Ah Van over in the corner.
Castleford pulled a try back when Solomona linked with scrum-half Luke Gale to get Flynn over.
Widnes struck on the stroke of half-time when centre Chris Bridge followed up Joe Mellor's high kick.
Castleford got within two points when hooker Adam Milner created Flynn's second, but Widnes replied with four tries in 12 minutes.
Ah Van powered through, Lloyd White dummied his way over then followed up his own speculative chip for a second, and Mellor scored an opportunist effort.
From 38-12 the Tigers staged a late rally - Larne Patrick crashing over for his first try for the club, Gale supporting a break from deep inside his own half and Flynn completing his hat-trick - but it was too late.
Widnes captain Kevin Brown hailed the character of the injury-hit Vikings after they handed Super League debuts to Jay Chapelhow and Brad Walker.
"We were great for 60 minutes but then started to panic," Brown said. "We were massively under strength so we're really happy with the two points.
"Chris Houston has probably been our best forward all year and we also lost Gil Dudson and Setaimata Sa so to come here with these young lads we showed fantastic character.
"The good thing about kids is that they give you energy and they really lifted us when they came on. To get that win is fantastic."
Wasn't the boys night tonight, credit to Widnes who were the better team. Lads must learn & move on, get ready to go again nxt Sunday. 🐯👊— Ben Roberts (@ben02roberts) June 9, 2016
Vikings coach Denis Betts reckons they need only one more win to ensure a place in the Super 8s.
"It was a win that we needed," Betts said. "If we can one or two more games we can climb the table a bit more. We're not relying on others losing now to stay in the eight.
"One more win should secure our place in the top eight and two more could push us into the six.
"I thought we were fantastic across the board. This is a really tough place to win."
Flynn, who is on a season-long loan fromWidnesafter being unable to secure a first-team spot, was cleared to face his parent club and responded in style.
"I was really pleased for Paddy because he's never done anything wrong," Betts said. "He needed an opportunity and I knew coming here he would be well coached. He looks like a really good winger and I'm pleased for him."
Castleford coach Daryl Powell cut a dejected figure after watching his side suffer a fourth consecutive home defeat to lose ground on the top four.
"That was terrible, just a very poor performance," Powell said.
"Eight errors in the first half was just too much of a weight for a team that's not playing well to bear. We just put ourselves under so much pressure.
"We only really looked like a team that wanted to win in the last 10 minutes, which just wound me up to be honest, the fact that it took that long for us to look like we were desperate to win it.”