TRANS-TASMAN PREVIEWS | We've got a look over and made our picks for the opening night of the rep ro...
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Widnes, who have been in freefall recently have to suffering 10 straight defeats in Superleague, overcame a plucky Leigh side who showed plenty of fight and commitment.
Both sides had nothing to play for other then pride and it was Widnes who showed enough fight to get past the leagues bottom placed club.
Three tries in six minutes from Paul Ballard, Brad Watts and Simon Finnigan assured the points for the Vikings.
But they did not have things entirely their own way as Nick Owen opened the scoring after some good work from half-back John Duffy.
Widnes hit back in style with a well worked score from wingman Ballard, who crashed over after he pounced on Kieran Kerr?s neat chip through - Stephen Myler added the extras to put the hosts back in touch.
Widnes began to inch their way ahead with some good spells of pressure on the Leigh line and that pressure finally converted the points when Gary Connolly powered his way over after he benefited from a superb Myler break.
Myler again added a conversion to put his side in the commanding position.
But Leigh did not give up the fight, after the series of mistakes from the Vikings they got the try they were searching for as Duffy squeezed in the corner. Owen then landed the kick to reduce the deficit.
But three minutes later they conceded a try just before the break from Widnes loose forward Jules O?Neil after he latched onto Myler?s clever chip through.
Leigh got off to a flyer at the start of the second period and after some good build up play from the Centurion forwards. Rob Jackson forced his way over the whitewash.
Widnes should have hit back straight away through Ballard but he was hauled down by speedy full-back John Wilshere, 10 metres from the line.
From the breakdown Leigh stand-off Carl Forber went over after Wilshere had chipped his way through the Viking defence.
Ballard grabbed his second of the afternoon moments later after he took Myler?s high kick and then Watts strolled over to give Widnes the edge.
Finnigan rounded things up on 63 minutes to give the home fans something to cheer about.
Widnes: Watts, Ballard, Connolly, Hughes, Viane, Myler, Kerr, O?Connor, Smith, J. O?Neill, Finnigan, Frame, J. O?Neill.
Replacements: Nash, Whitaker, Mills, Holmes.
Leigh: Wilshere, Owen, Jackson, Cooper, Maden, Forber, J. Duffy, Fleary, Rowley, Marshall, Wilkes, Stapleton, Leafa.
Replacements: Sturm, Stevens, Maddocks, Coleman.
Widnes (18) 36. Tries: Ballard 2, Connolly, J. O'Neill, Watts, Finnigan. Goals: Myler 6.
Leigh (10) 20. Tries: Owen, J. Duffy, Jackson, Forber. Goals: Owen 2.
Referee: Julian King (St Helens)