First Utility Super League XIX - Round 14 Review

A look across the weekend action from our Northern Hemisphere correspondent Simon Reuben as Round 14 of the First Utility Super League was played out.

Twitter: LeagueUnlimitedSuper League

Facebook: LeagueUnlimitedSuper League

Below we look at how Round 14 played out...

Salford Red Devils 4

Tries: Meli

Wigan Warriors 25

Tries: Bateman, Powell, Burgess 2
Goals: Smith 4
Drop Goal: Smith

Att: 3,706

Injury hit Wigan continued thier impressive from with a strong win over Salford Red Devils at the A.J. Bell Stadium.

After a tremendous win over League leader Leeds Rhinos at the Magic Weekend, Shaun Wane's Wigan were again down to the bare bones with no fewer than 9 regulars unavailable due to injury.

Salford with a sprinkling of ex Wiganers and former assistance Iestyn Harris, who for the first time would coach against his mentor, fancied thier chances but after dominating the possession had Full-Back Greg Eden held up over the line and had a try chalked off for obstruction by the video referee.

Both teams continued to go at each other and this time Dan Sarginson had a try disallowed by the video referee as the Warriors gained the confidence, the deadlock was finally broken with one of the last plays of the first half.

With less than thirty second left on the clock Matty Smith kicked ahead on the last tackle and in support was John Bateman who collected the ball and slid over the line. Smith converted to make it 6-0 to the visitors.

At the start of the second half Wigan lost England Hooker Michael McIlorum to a knee injury but this did not stop them make it 12-0 as Sam Powell stepped thorugh to score next to the posts.

Know in control the third Warriors soon arrive when young Full-Back Ryan Hampshire brilliantly setup follow teenager Joe Burgess to slide in at the left hand corner. Smith kicked the extras and then kicked a one-pointer to make it 19-0 after 71 minutes.

The icing on the cake came soon after when Wigan moved the ball out wide and Burgess showed real pace to leave everybody in his wake to touchdown, once again made mo mistake with the extras and when it looked like that Salford would be shutout after receiving a penalty Meli scored a late consolation.

However, this did not take the gloss of another fine Wigan win for thier youngsters as the Red Devils stay at the wrong end of the table with a seventh successive defeat.

Leeds Rhinos 20

Tries: Moon, Singleton, Ward
Goals: Sinfield 4

Hull FC 6

Tries: Shaul
Goal: Westerman

Att: 15,247

Leeds Rhinos bounced back from last week loss in Manchester to claim a scrappy win over out of form Hull FC at Headingley Carnegie Stadium.

The Rhinos gave a debut to teenage hooker Robbie Ward and rested warhorse Jamie Peacock.

Teenage winger Callum Lancaster made his Black and Whites bow and Setaimata Sa also featured for the first time since his comeback from London Irish Rugby Union side.

Before the game there was a series of thundery showers which made for difficult handling conditions on a greasy surface.

Hull went closest to breaking the deadlock in the first quarter when Gareth Ellis was held up over the line by ex Hull winger Tom Briscoe and having most of the ball, Leeds broke the deadlock in the 24th minute when Ryan Hall's got the ball out of the tackle for Joel Moon to score in the left hand corner.

Kevin Sinfield converted from the touchline to give Leeds a 6-0 lead and this was the only points of the first half.

The Rhinos increased their lead after the break when Brad Singleton reacted first to Danny McGuire grubber kick which came of the post padding.

Sinfield added the extras and a penalty to give the hosts a 14-0 lead going into the final ten minutes of the game. Ward capped off a dream debut as he pounced on an error from Kirk Yeaman to end any hope for The Black and Whites.

Hull, who offered little in attack , gained a consolation in the last minute when Jamie Shaul got over the line but this could not prevent them from going down to a fourth successive defeat.

For the Rhinos they cemented top spot and they remained one point ahead of second place St Helens.

St Helens 41

Tries: Wheeler 2, Hohaia, Wellens, Dawson, Wilkin, Masoe
Goals: Walsh 6
Drop Goal: Walsh

Huddersfield Giants 22

Tries: Patrick, Blackmore 2, Ferres
Goals: Brough 3

Att: 10,218

St Helens ended Huddersfield Giants five-match winning run with a dominant performance at Langtree Park.

After suffering a heavy loss to Warrington last Sunday, veteran player Paul Wellens labelled his St Helens side as "embarrassing" as they looked to get up and running against form side Huddersfield Giants.

It took just six minutes for Saints scrum-half Luke Walsh to stamp his authority on the game by putting Jon Wilkin through a gap to create the position for Gary Wheeler to open the scoring.

James Roby then broke out of his own half to get Lance Hohaia and the third score inside the first fifteen minutes soon followed as Wellens finished off a half-break from Walsh, who kicked three from three to make it 18-0.

On 17 minutes Huddersfield got back into the game thanks to Larne Patrick after he charged onto Danny Brough's pass ten metres out. But this was a short-lived comeback as winger Matty Dawson added a fourth try for the hosts who led 22-6 at the interval.

Both tries exchanged touchdowns early into the second half. First a knock-on by Jason Chan inside his own half gifted Saints the ball and they made the most of it, with Wilkin going over the line. Winger Ben Blackmore scored the Giants four pointer after good work by Leroy Cudjoe.

Mose Masoe took Roby's pass and powered over for Saints sixth score but the visitors responded immediately as Brett Ferres got on the end of Brough's kick.

In the last fifteen minutes Wheeler grabbed his second try and Cudjoe pounced on a handling error at the other end to enable Blackmore to make it a double.

However, Saints had the last say with the ever impressive Walsh kicking a last minute drop goal to keep his side just one point behind League Leaders Leeds Rhinos.

Catalan Dragons 46

Tries: Escare 2, Whitehead, Oldfield, Simon, Millard, Pryce, Ta'ai
Goals: Bosc 7

Bradford Bulls 4

Tries: Foster

Att: 6,890

Catalan Dragons moved up the table with a comprehensive win over second bottom Bradford Bulls at the Gilbert Brutus Stadium in Perpignan.

After suffering a heavy defeat at the Magic Weekend, the Bulls welcomed back loan duo Joe Arundel and Antonio Kaufusi in the side but they made a shocking start to the game.

On two minutes, good footwork from Zeb Taia allowed him to offload to full-back Morgan Escare who raced away on an 80-metre run to the line. Thomas Bosc added the extras.

Ten minutes later Lee Gaskell and Jamie Foster allowed a Bosc kick to bounce and former Bull Elliott Whitehead picked up the loose ball to make the duo pay.

Catalan then added further misery on the Bulls as from the kick-off Michael Oldfield caught the ball and slipped past Danny Addy and Adrian Purtell to go the full length of the field and score. Bosc kicked the goal as the Frenchside led 18-0 at the break.

It did not take long after the resumption for try number four to follow as Ben Pomeroy offloaded to the supporting Escare who made it a double

Michael Simon was the next to get on the scoresheet after good work Leon Pryce. Finally the Bulls travelling supporters had something to cheer as Foster took Gaskell pass to score out wide but this was as good as it got.

Pryce continued the home scoring by breaking clear and this led to Daryl Millard scoring try number six. Pryce then got in on the act against his former side before Taia completed proceedings by collecting a chip from Bosc, who added two more conversions to round off a resounding win for the Dragons

So Bradford Bulls survival in Super League will now rest on the appeal, against the six points they were deducted for going into administration, to be heard at the beginning of next month

Castleford Tigers 34

Tries: Shenton, Webster, Wheeldon, Dorn 2, Clark
Goals: Sneyd 5

Widnes Vikings 22

Tries: Brown, Marsh, Phelps, Gilmore
Goals: Tickle 3

Att: 5,576

Castleford Tigers maintained thier place in the top four with a strong second half performance to get the better of Widnes Vikings at the Mend-Hose-Jungle.

Both sides came into this one on the back of good performance at the Etihad Stadium last week and it was the Tigers who opened the scoring as inform centre Michael Shenton got on the end of Marc Sneyd's kick.

Widnes hit back and stand-off Kevin Brown marked his 250th career appearance by touching down next to the posts. Danny Tickle added the extras to make it 6-4.

In this see saw half Jake Webster went over for the hosts only for Stefan Marsh to reply for the Vikings as they went into the break with a narrow 12-10 lead.

The second-half started with Castleford putting their foot firmly on the accelerator as they blew Widnes away with three try burst in the opening ten minutes. Jack Owens fumbling possession under his own posts, allowing Scott Wheeldon to pick up the loose ball before crashing over, Paddy Flynn and Castleford's Justin Carney were sin-binned for fighting.

Enter Luke Dorn who then added quick fire brace and then after quite spell, hooker Daryl Clark scampered his way under the posts to make it 34-12 and end any hopes for the Vikings.

Cameron Phelps and Tom Gilmore both got over the whitewash in the last ten minutes for Widnes but it was too late as Castleford kept the pressure upon Leeds and St Helens at the top end of the table.

Hull KR 48

Tries: Hodgson 2, Costigan, Walker, Gardner 2, Larroyer, Hall 2
Goals: Burns 6

London Broncos 16

Tries: Solomona, Foster 2
Goals: Drinkwater 2

Att: 7,439

Hull KR were far too strong for winless London Broncos at the KC Lightstream Stadium.

After a cagey opening, Rovers took the lead on seventeen minutes when good work by Kris Keating and Neville Costigan set up hooker Josh Hodgson.

London got some ball and reduced the arrears through Denny Solomona after he collected a short pass from Scott Moore. But scores from Adam Walker and Ade Gardner before the interval gave the hosts a useful 22-4 lead.

The Broncos made a good start to the second half and hit back with two tries. On loan Leeds forward Alex Foster got on the end of a Josh Drinkwater kick to cross and good work from James Cunningham got Foster over for his second as the gap was down to 22-16.

However, the Londoners fell apart in the final quarter as with poor defending they coincided fiver unanswered tries. Kevin Larroyer got things underway before Gardner and a brace by Craig Hall ended any hoped the visitors.

In the last minute of the game Hodgson heaped more misery on the Broncos as they suffered another heavy loss to remain at the bottom of the table on zero points.

Wakefield Wildcats 4

Tries: Walshaw

Warrington Wolves 36

Tries: Ratchford, Currie 2, Ormsby, Bridge, Atkins, Myler
Goals: Bridge 4

Att: 3,698

Warrington Wolves moved up to fifth with a one-sided victory over Wakefield Wildcats at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium.

On a bit of a roll, Warrington were looking thier good run of from by getting past third from bottom Wakefield Wildcats.

Wakefield started well and took the game to Warrington, but the visitors held firm and hit back with a breakaway try from Stefan Ratchford.

The next scored did not arrive until the final minute of the first half when young forward Ben Currie hit the hosts with two tries in as many minutes to give the Wolves an 18-0 lead at the break.

Immediately after the resumption, Gene Ormsby linked up with Chris Bridge to score Warrington fourth touchdown as the lead went out to 24-0.

Lucas Walshaw finally produced a response on 54 minutes as Wakefield scored a consolation but normal service resumed when Richard Myler marked his return from a shoulder injury by creating a try for ex Wildcat Ryan Atkins

Then the halfback wrapped up an empathic win for the Wolves by getting on the end of Currie ‘ kick to score next to the posts.

First Utility Super League Ladder after Round 14

1Leeds Rhinos14111241013223
2St Helens14110345927822
3Castleford Tigers14100446025120
4Wigan Warriors13100340522020
5Warrington Wolves1480635626916
6Huddersfield Giants1472539331616
7Widnes Vikings1380532132716
8Hull KR1462633932514
9Catalan Dragons1470735839814
10Hull FC1450931629210
11Salford Red Devils144192553829
12Wakefield Wildcats1440102814328
13Bradford Bulls1430112085520
14London Broncos1400142025890