The battle of the Kingstone Press Championship heavyweights at the Leigh Sports Village. A loss for the hosts in this match will eradicate any hope of top tier rugby for next season. However, a win would put them back in the running after they were easily beaten by Halifax in round five. Bradford were also put to the sword without much hassle last weekend but who will bounce back on Saturday?
Last Time Out
Leigh Centurions travelled to The Shay for a round five matchup with Halifax. Unfortunately for the Centurions, they were beaten by Fax who recorded their first win of the Qualifiers and moved off bottom place. The visitors were 20-0 down after the first half thanks to tries from Dane Manning, Ross Divorty and James Saltonstall. Tyrer converted all three tries and even added a penalty goal for good measure. Leigh needed to come out of the blocks all guns blazing in the second half, and that’s exactly what they did as Adam Higson and Fuifui Moimoi both scored four-pointers. But the momentum which swung the way of the Centurions was soon halted when Scott Murrell crossed the whitewash. Man of the Match Tyrer got a well deserved try on the hour, the win was pretty much sealed from that point onwards. It was fitting that a penalty goal, kicked by Tyrer, was the final scoring act on a very successful afternoon for Fax. A very dismal day for Leigh, however.
Bradford Bulls were taught a lesson in the second half of their match with Hull Kingston Rovers last weekend. The Bulls conceded 36 points without reply in the final 40 minutes at the KC Lightstream Stadium, they started that half with a Epalahame Lauaki in the sin-bin for an eye gouge. Danny Williams committed a professional foul after eight minutes which meant he found himself in the sin-bin for most of the remaining first quarter. Josh Mantellato scored the first try of the afternoon but James Mendeika hit back for Bradford soon after. Before Lauaki’s exit for ten minutes, Hull KR had scored two more tries to add to Mantellato’s opener. Dixon and Mantellato himself both added four-pointers with a few minutes of the half remaining. The second half blowout started when Dixon touched down, shortly before Dane Chisholm followed the winger’s act. Further tries came from Ken Sio and Kris Welham as the Robins started piling on the points. Greame Horne got on the scoresheet for Rovers before Dixon bagged his third and fourth try of the game during the final quarter.
Both sets of prop forwards will be raring to go at the weekend as they look to put on a no-nonsense performance for the Sky Sports cameras. Leigh have the ever-recognisable Fuifui Moimoi in their ranks, but they will be without Jamie Acton who’s serving a two match suspension for striking with the knees. Jake Emmitt is a very good forward in the second tier and he will feature on Saturday. Bradford have good experience in their forwards, with former St Helens prop Paul Clough and Adam Sidlow both regulars. Epalahame Lauaki and Steve Crossley started on the bench against Hull KR but whether or not coach Lowes will put one of them in the starting 13 remains to be seen.
A massive game for both sides this weekend. Bradford are currently in fifth which grants them an away match in the Million Pound Game. The Centurions are two points behind the Bulls so a win is a must at the Leigh Sports Village. This match could well be a blockbuster! – Bradford by 8