Widnes will play derby rivals Warrington in the Challenge Cup quarter-finals after defeating Halifax 28-18 at the Shay in round six.
Widnes went into half-time with an 18-12 lead, but the hot weather made the game a slog as both sides seemed subdued.
The weather wasn’t a problem early on for Widnes, as hooker Aaron Heremaia ploughed over to give the away side the advantage, before Halifax levelled through James Saltonstall.
Lloyd White and Chris Houston added further tries for Denis Betts’ men, but Halifax would not go away, as Adam Robinson reduced the arrears once more just before the hooter.
Halifax were galvanised after reducing the Vikings lead to six, and they eventually reaped their rewards of their pressure when Miles Greenwood, along with a third conversion from centre Steve Tyrer, levelled just six minutes into the second period.
But the Super League side claimed their second win in this year’s competition as Charly Runciman, who debuted for Widnes against Halifax in last year’s Middle Eights, restored his side’s lead upon his return to West Yorkshire.
With five minutes to go, Vikings youngster Jay Chapelow did well to get on the end of a Joe Mellor kick, Hanbury goaling his fourth from five to secure his side’s place in the quarter finals.
Widnes will now take a second trip of the season to the Halliwell Jones Stadium to face derby rivals Warrington in the last eight.
Halifax 18 (12)
Tries: Miles Greenwood (x1), James Saltonstall (x1), Adam Robinson (x1)
Goals: Steve Tyrer (x3)
Widnes 28 (18)
Tries: Aaron Heremaia (x1), Lloyd White (x1), Chris Houston (x1), Charly Runciman (x1), Jay Chapelow (x1)
Goals: Rhys Hanbury (x4)