Halifax Panthers made it 8 consecutive wins in the Betfred Championship with a dominant 13 try demolition of Dewsbury Rams at The Shay. A potential banana skin in times gone by, Simon Grix’s Panthers continued their hot run of form with some scintillating and at times ruthless Rugby League to send a message out to the rest of the Championship.
Grix was able to recall Greg Worthington and Matty Gee back to the side for the first time in the 2022 league campaign, Gee in particular earning the plaudits with a fantastic debut after nearly 10 months since his last game.
It was a decisive team performance and as early as 4th minute the tone of the game was set, a perfectly weighted Joe Keyes kick to the corner was spilled by the Rams’ Brad Graham under pressure from Lachlan Walmsley with Louis Jouffret pouncing to score the Panthers opening score of what would be a long evening for the Rams.
It didn’t take long for Fax to strike again. And it was with returning Worthington, who after taking months to open his try scoring account in 2021, only took 10 minutes in 2022, powering over on the left flank.
Dewsbury threatened to fight back but it was Fax who got the next score, Keyes and Jouffret linking well to set the ever impressive James Woodburn-Hall free who unselfishly put the returning Zack McComb in at the corner.
If there was one negative of the game it was goalkicking, Keyes missing all 3 of his attempts at goal which meant it was only 12-0 and Louis Jouffret taking over the tee. If Keyes was having an off night with the boot he certainly wasn’t anywhere else, the scrum-half pouncing on a Ben Blackmore error to make the score 18-0 with Jouffret converting. Jouffret was again successful with the boot converting from the touchline after Lachlan Walmsley scored yet again after great build up play from Woodburn-Hall, 2 tries in as many minutes to make it 24-0.
Woodburn-Hall notched another assist just before half time, this time for Ben Tibbs who showed pace and power to plunder yet another try for the Panthers to put the home side 28-0 up at the break.
Earlier in the season the 2nd half would have seen a visitor fight back or a lacklustre Fax performance, however neither happened as the Panthers went on the Rampage and played with all the confidence of a side notching their 8th consecutive win.
It took less than 5 minutes after the break for Fax to strike, Tibbs turning provider after wonderful build-up play yet again from Keyes and Woodburn-Hall with Ed Barber the try scorer. Jouffret added the extras to make it 34-0 before Lachlan Walmsley claimed his now customary interception try, plucking a Matty Beharrell pass to race 70m to score in the corner to put him joint top of the Championship try scoring charts.
With 30 mins to go, Fax might be forgiven for putting the cue on the rack and letting the Rams fight back. But after a scrappy middle period, the Panthers scorched home with a wet sail thanks to 5 tries in the final 15 minutes.
Tibbs scored his 2nd after yet another assist from the outstanding Woodburn-Hall, who then provided another assist 3 minutes later for Joe Keyes after a great off load from Huddersfield Giants Dual-Reg Ollie Roberts. Jouffret handed to goal kicking duties to Walmsley ago slotted over the extras but the Frenchman soon danced over the line after great work from Zack McComb. If you thought that was the end of the scoring, you reckoned without the now prolific try scoring exploits of Prop Dan Murray who after scoring a brace at York last time out scored another 2 tries in the final 2 minutes to well and truly put the icing on the cake.
The first after a storming run from Captain Brandon Moore who handed off to Jouffret who with the line begging for his hattrick unselfishly handed off to Murray to finish under the posts, only to repeat the trick just before the hooter. Walmsley converting both to make the final score Halifax 66-0 Dewsbury.
Woodburn-Hall, Walmsley, Worthington, Tibbs, McComb, Jouffret, Keyes, Calcott, Moore, Murray, Roberts, Gee, Tangata
Subs: Martin, Gwaze, Larroyer, Barber
Tries: Jouffret (4, 74), Worthington (10), McComb (21), Keyes (27, 67), Walmsley (30, 51), Tibbs (37, 64), Barber (44), Murray (77, 79)
Goals: Jouffret 3/6, Walmsley 4/4, Keyes 0/3
Graham, Blackmore, Ryder, Greensmith, Carr, Sweeting, Beharrell, Beckett, Butterworth, Stevens, Tomlinson, Knowles, Trout
Subs: Dixon, Kidd, Schofield, Peltier
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