“It was a game of two halves” – a classic Rugby League cliché but Halifax Panthers’ away trip to Widnes Vikings was a perfect illustration of this as the Panthers 4-14 half time lead was wiped out 10 minutes after half time as the Vikings posted 4 back to back tries. Ultimately 36 unanswered Second Half points maintained the hosts 100% record with a 40-14 victory leaving Fax feeling 50-50 with 2 wins and 2 draws from their opening 4 games.

It all started so well for the Panthers in Matty Gee’s 200th Career game. After less than 5 minutes, Gareth Widdop dummied his way over for his first try for his hometown team. Louis Jouffret surprisingly pulled his conversion wide but was soon converting his own score from a well worked try, finishing off great hands from Adam Tangata and Connor Davies for an early 0-10 lead which was thoroughly deserved.

The defence which earnt victory 7 days previous at home to Batley was on show once again as despite the attacking threat of Jack Owens and ex Fax Man Tom Gilmore, the Vikings couldn’t register a score until the 35th minute. Rhodri Lloyd claiming a crossfield kick batted back. Lloyd thought he had a second soon after but referee Ben Thaler judged he lost the ball as he went to put the ball down unopposed.

Fax made it count as they went up the other end of the field to give ex Viking Ben Kavanagh the chance to power over for a 4-14 lead and looking good for it too.

The Second Half however was a totally different affair. Alan Coleman’s words must have been ringing in the Widnes players ears as they scored 4 back to back tries through Matty Fozard, Ryan Ince, Danny Langtree and Man of the Match Owens, all converted by Gilmore to give the Vikings a 28-14 lead which they never looked like surrendering. It was a huge counter blow from the hosts and wrestled vital momentum in a match that they would never relinquish. 

Fax managed to stem the tide slightly in the next 10 minutes but never had the possession or territory to pull back any score, instead Lloyd and Owens claimed their braces to leave Liam Finn scratching his head as to how another Second Half collapse happened with a crushing 40-14 defeat.

Widnes Vikings
Owens, Butt, Fleming, Edge, Ince, Lyons, Gilmore, Kirk, Johnston, Murray, Lloyd, Wilde, Gregson
Subs: Fozard, Langtree, Walker, Field (18th Man: Field)

Tries: Lloyd (31, 79), Fozard (44), Ince (47), Langtree (50), Owens (52, 69), 
Goals: Gilmore 5/7
Penalty: Gilmore 1/1

Halifax Panthers
Woodburn-Hall, Saltonstall, Tibbs, Smith, McComb, Jouffret, Widdop, Larroyer, Inman, Fairbank, Kavanagh, Gee, C Davies
Subs: Tangata, Lannon, O Davies, Hursey (18th Man: Campbell)

Tries: Widdop (3), Jouffret (23), Kavanagh (37)
Goals: Jouffret 1/3

#BWO #MatchReport

You may also like…