Widnes Vikings 44-12 York City Knights

Widnes Vikings 44-12 York City Knights widnesvikings.co.uk

13th April 2019

Widnes Vikings booked their place in the next round of the Coral Challenge Cup, as they returned to winning ways with a 44-12 victory over York City Knights.

Sam Freeman marked his home debut with a fine performance, crossing for four of the Vikings’ eight tries as they progressed to the sixth round.

Kieron Purtill welcomed back Danny Craven, Anthony Gelling, Sam Wilde and Ted Chapelhow to his match-day squad, as James Ford fielded a much-changed line-up for the cup clash.

The visitors opened the scoring after just two minutes, as Craven’s kick-off ran dead on the full, and from the resulting penalty York were in. Lewis Heckford’s kick wasn’t dealt with by Craven, as it ricocheted off the post and into the path of Brad Hey who scored, with Nick Rawsthorne adding the extras.

After a frustrating start, the Vikings responded immediately, as Craven made amends by selling a dummy to the defence to break and lay a try on for Sam Freeman out wide. Jack Owens converted to bring the hosts level.

Ryan Ince almost found his way over two minutes later, but the wide man was forced into touch by Perry Whiteley as he collected an offload from Gelling.

Chris Dean had to leave the field on 15 minutes for a concussion assessment, but much to the relief of the home supporters he was able to return to the field.

As the Vikings looked to hit the front they became frustrated, failing to execute their chances with a number of errors, as Gelling failed to hold onto a pass with the try line beckoning.

It wasn’t until the 31st minute that Widnes eventually found the front, as a great break from Ince led to Keanan Brand drawing a penalty deep in the York half. Off the back of the repeat set, Owens fired a perfect cut-out ball to Freeman who raced in to collect his second of the game.

With two minutes of the half remaining, Owens created another score as he managed to get a last tackle kick away under pressure, with Brand climbing highest to pluck the ball from the air and touch down.

Owens added the extras to both scores, as the Vikings headed to the sheds with a two-score advantage.

Half-time: Widnes Vikings 18-6 York City Knights

The Vikings started the half by putting York under pressure, as Craven’s grubber led to Owen Farnworth trapping Kevin Brown inside his own in-goal. From the drop-out though, Widnes came up with an error that saw the chance go begging.

On 49 minutes the home side managed to add to their lead though, as Jordan Johnstone won a penalty for a ball steal 10 metres from the try line. Following that, the ball was sent through hands and culminated in Freeman diving over to finish well out wide for his hat-trick.

The Knights pegged their opponents back immediately after, as they progressed into the Widnes half following a penalty, leading to Jordan Baldwinson spinning out of a tackle to score from close range. Lewis Heckford added the conversion, cutting the deficit to 10 points.

In the final quarter of the contest, the home side pulled away, starting with Freeman’s fourth and best effort on 63 minutes. The youngster broke down the left edge to beat his opposite man, before showing great strength to wrestle his way over despite the best efforts of the fullback.

Seven minutes later, Freeman turned provider as he found space out wide once again, this time electing to offload the ball back inside and send Joe Lyons over untouched.

Five minutes from time the Vikings were in again, as Gelling managed to free his arm from the tackle and find Ince, who had too much pace for Whiteley to deal with.

From the kick-off set, Wilde offloaded in the tackle to Brand who managed to free Owens, and the Vikings number five raced 50 metres to round off the scoring.

Full-time: Widnes Vikings 44-12 York City Knights

Widnes Vikings: Jack Owens, Ryan Ince, Anthony Gelling, Keanan Brand, Sam Freeman, Danny Craven, Joe Lyons, Jay Chapelhow, Jordan Johnstone, Hep Cahill, Chris Dean, Sam Wilde, MacGraff Leuluai.

Interchanges: Ted Chapelhow, Lloyd Roby, Owen Farnworth, Liam Walsh.

Tries: Freeman (5, 31, 49, 63), Brand (38), Lyons (70), Ince (75), Owens (76)

Goals: Owens 6/8

York City Knights: Kevin Brown, Judah Mazive, Jason Bass, Nick Rawsthorne, Perry Whiteley, Lewis Heckford, Kris Brining, Jordan Baldwinson, William Jubb, Jack Blagbrough, Brad Hey, Josh Jordan-Roberts, Joe Porter.

Interchanges: David Peterson, Marcus Stock, Michael Kelly, Ronan Dixon.

Tries: Hey (2), Baldwinson (53)

Goals: Rawsthorne 1/1, Heckford 1/1


Widnes Vikings 44-12 York City Knights widnesvikings.co.uk