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EXTENDED PREVIEW – Leigh Centurions v Halifax Preview

Leigh will have been sweating by the end of last Sunday’s match with Dewsbury, and they’ll be glad to have come out of West Yorkshire with their unbeaten record still intact. Despite a loss to Sheffield in round 10, Halifax got back to winning ways in emphatic fashion.

Last Time Out

Leigh made the journey to the Tetley’s Stadium to take on Dewsbury in round 11, for what would be a very tough challenge. Kieran Hyde kicked an early penalty goal before Rob Spicer touched down in the 8th minute. But, Leigh aren’t top for nothing, and they replied with four tries before Dewsbury could reply with a score of their own. Liam Kay scored a first half double, Gregg McNally and Martyn Ridyard also crossed for the Centurions. Karl Pryce posted the last try of the first half with two minutes remaining, and that try gave Dewsbury the momentum as they scored the first try of the second half. Dalton Grant cut the 12 point deficit even more after the break with a four pointer after 49 minutes, but Greg Worthington made his way over a short while later. Luke Adamson kept Dewsbury in touch with the visitors before they were pegged back again with Kay’s third try of the day. Grant crossed the try line for a second time but it’d be the final scoring act of the day as Leigh kept their 100% record with a slender four point victory.

Halifax returned to West Yorkshire after an unsuccessful trip to Doncaster the week before, this time around they played host to Paul Cooke’s Dons. Halifax were dominant throughout and were victorious with a 40-6 scoreline. James Saltonstall, Ryan Maneely, Ben Heaton and Ross Divorty all scored tries before the 20 minute mark was reached, and the scoring continued into the final quarter of the half as Gareth Potts and Scott Murrell extended their side’s lead. Only three tries were scored in the second half, and one of those went to Doncaster’s Pasqualle Dunn on the hour. Tommy Saxton and Divorty rounded off the match’s scoring for the hosts on what was a good return to winning ways for the West Yorkshire men.

Key Battle

Bob Beswick was the only hooker selected by Paul Rowley for Leigh’s match against Dewsbury last weekend. The injury to Sean Penkywicz is a blow to the Centurions but their undeniably brilliant record is still unscathed. Former Halifax man Beswick will be coming up against either Ryan Maneely or Ben Kaye, the West Yorkshire’s side options at hooker this year. Maneely is a former Warrington junior and he scored last weekend, and also scored Halifax’s only try against Leigh in their fixture at The Shay earlier on in the campaign. Ben Kaye is an experienced head, and someone that Maneely can learn a lot from. The hooking battle at the weekend will be interesting, and whether Lewis Foster comes back into the Leigh fold to help Beswick out remains to be seen.


Leigh’s well documented record may well come under threat this weekend when Halifax come to town. Halifax were unlucky to lose in their match at Leigh Sports Village last year, and they’ll not be wanting a repeat while Leigh would definitely take the same result. It will be a close one, well, at least I think so! – Leigh by 10

I study Sports Journalism at the University of Sunderland. Write about the Kingstone Press Championship for a few websites, as well as doing match reports and previews for Sheffield Eagles.

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