Sheffield Eagles 12-34 Leigh Centurions
Sunday 31st March 2019, 15:00pm
Challenge Cup - Round:
Ryan Millar, Olly Davies,
Pat Walker 2,
Greg McNally, Toby Adamson, Mitch Cox, Nicholas Gregson, Jonny Pownall, Sam Brooks,
Martyn Ridyard 5,
Leigh Centurions booked their place in the fifth round of the Challenge Cup with a professional performance against Sheffield Eagles.
Three tries in eight second half minutes was enough for Leigh to seal victory in comfortable fashion against an Eagles team who flattered to deceive compared to previous weeks.
Sheffield handed a debut to Lewis Taylor while there was a late change to the Centurions’ lineup as Stefan Marsh failed a fitness test.
Dec O’Donnell came in for the former Widnes outside-back and started on the bench.
It took three minutes for the first points of the game and it went the way of the visitors. Leigh showed their worth on the fast surface by playing the ball wide for Mitch Cox who passed for Gregg McNally to cross. Martyn Ridyard added the extras.
McNally was at the heart of the action and should have returned the favour for Cox but his pass to the winger was adjudged forward by Greg Dolan.
Leigh certainly had the best of the action in the first period and were ruing another missed opportunity as Jonny Pownall’s try was ruled out for a forward pass on 24 minutes.
Moments later, Sheffield were level thanks to a bullet Josh Guzdek pass which found Ryan Millar. The winger had a walk-in and got a better angle for Patch Walker to duly add the extras.
On the half-hour, Josh Woods caught Millar out as the Wigan loanee poached a 40/20. The following set saw Toby Adamson barge over and regain the visitors’ advantage. Ridyard goaled.
A Guzdek error close to half-time gave Leigh one more chance to add to their tally. They capitalised on the opportunity as Cox fended off a number of Eagles defenders to scoot over. Ridyard converted for a two-score half-time lead.
The Eagles came out of the blocks well and cut the lead to six points when Walker’s grubber was collected by Oliver Davies who dotted down. Walker converted.
Soon after and Sheffield were close to the Centurions whitewash courtesy of some great play from Guzdek, Glover and Thackeray who made solid metres. A penalty later gave the Eagles more field position but a knock-on stopped them in their tracks.
Just shy of the hour mark and Leigh were back to two scores ahead. Millar took a high bomb with ease but didn’t manage to hold on after being tackled, Nick Gregson was the beneficiary for four points. Ridyard converted.
Two tries in as many minutes for the Centurions ended the game as a contest and put the visitors into the hat for the next round.
Firstly, quick hands to the right flank opened up space for Pownall to go over untouched. Ridyard couldn’t convert from the corner.
A tiring Sheffield defence could not handle the next barrage which came in the form of Sam Brooks. The prop forward blasted his way through the Eagles’ rearguard and he wasn’t going to be stopped. Ridyard goaled.
By Dan Fowler for the League Express