Golden point hero Farrell: Time for Eagles to push on
Sheffield Eagles’ golden point hero Izaac Farrell says it’s time for the Eagles to kick on after winning their first league match of the season against Batley Bulldogs on Sunday.
In his first game for three weeks, Farrell set up a try and kicked the winning drop goal in extra time to seal an important 19-18 win for the Eagles.
Despite being part of history - the Eagles are the first team to ever win a regular season Championship game in golden point - the half-back is focused on this weekend’s contest against Bradford Bulls (at Tetley's Stadium, Dewsbury), live on Our League.
“It’s back-to-back wins for us after beating Halifax in the Challenge Cup the week before,” he said.
“All we’re looking to do now is go three in a row, get that second win in the league and kickstart our season.
“The first few weeks we played tough opposition in Leigh and Toulouse, with a tough loss against Halifax too, so it’s now time for redemption and for us to kick on.”
Farrell, a former Batley player himself, was expecting a tough contest in West Yorkshire and that certainly proved to be the case.
Although the former Huddersfield junior described the game as one for the forwards, he assisted Aaron Brown’s first try on 45-minutes before playing a kick to winger Ryan Millar, who miraculously batted the ball back into play for Brown’s brace soon after.
Brown’s double turned the score from 6-4 down at half-time to 16-6 up, following two conversions from Farrell.
“I’d describe it as a tough and traditional game really,” the half-back added.
“It was a middles game but you know when you go to Batley, you’re in for a tough game regardless of the weather.
“I thought I had a quiet first half.
"I made a couple of plays (in the second half) where we got the bounce of the ball, then Ryan pulled off a freakish bit of skill to get the ball back into Browny.
“You could tell in the second half that we wanted it, and everyone’s attitude seemed to change.
“We were down to 12-men for the opening few minutes but that didn’t seem to stop us.
"The momentum swung our way and we took advantage of that with two tries in quick succession.
"That certainly gave everyone a glimpse of what this team can do.”
Batley fired back with two converted tries of their own - a Farrell penalty goal sandwiched in-between - which levelled matters at 18-18 at the end of 80-minutes.
Shaun Lunt had a big opportunity to win the game for the hosts in extra time but his drop goal attempt was wayward.
The Eagles gained vital territory from a Batley error in the second half of golden point and Farrell didn’t pass up the opportunity, nailing the one-pointer from 25-metres.
Discussing the quick preparation to set-up for the drop, Farrell said: “I wanted to get the ball as quick as I could and get contact as quick as I could,”
“I hit it well, as soon as I struck it I thought it was going over.
“It’s a good feeling to kick the drop goal to win the game but I wouldn’t have been in that position if the other guys hadn’t worked as hard as they did.”
By Dan Fowler, photo by Alex Coleman