By Stephen Ibbetson
Halifax RLFC kept pace with the top four with a comfortable 46-4 win away at struggling Swinton Lions in the Betfred Championship.
They ran in five tries for a big half-time lead and added another three in the second half, with Kieren Moss and Ben Johnston both scoring braces and Steve Tyrer registering 18 points.
Fax made a number of changes to the line-up from last weekend’s defeat at Leigh Centurions, including returns for Will Sharp and Steve Tyrer from injury and suspension respectively.
Both sides traded early sets before Halifax got the first score. A Shane Grady kick forward was knocked on by Craig Mullen under pressure from Tyrer, and from that Scott Murrell’s short pass sent Chester Butler over to the right of the posts, with Tyrer adding the conversion.
Swinton had a promising spell after that try, and got back into the game with a score of their own. A good kick pinned Fax close to the line and good pressure forced a knock on, and from that set a quick move right was finished with Chris Hankinson feeding Mike Butt to round Ben Heaton and score. Hankinson’s conversion attempt was unsuccessful so Halifax kept a slender lead.
After withstanding more Swinton pressure, a couple of penalties brought Fax up the field and a move right was finished by Moss, who brilliantly skipped past two defenders to reach the line.
Tyrer converted that try as well as the three more before half-time that gave Halifax a very commanding lead at the break.
Their third try came from the work of the impressive Butler, who broke through the defence before releasing the supporting Moss to finish it off for his second try in six minutes.
Ed Barber made the break for the next, and after combining well with Will Sharp on the right wing he kicked infield for Johnston to chase in behind the defence and score.
Swinton conceded a penalty from the restart to give Halifax another opportunity, and they took it with Simon Grix’s short pass sending Dan Fleming over, to take them to 30 points going into the break.
Swinton started the second half as the brighter of the two sides, but couldn’t take their chances.
There was a lengthy delay to the game after a nasty head injury for Tyson in a tackle, and after 15 minutes of careful treatment he was stretchered off and taken to hospital.
Fax were stronger from the restart and quickly got the first points of the half, as Tyrer broke down the left side and had the speed to go 30m to the line, although he couldn’t convert his try from the touchline.
Halifax had all the momentum again and got a penalty close to the Lions line when Sharp was taken down with a high shot. From that the ball was played to Murrell with a gap in front of him to score to the right of the posts.
An eighth try followed soon after, with another break down the left which was finished with Heaton’s pass back inside for Johnston to score his second of the afternoon, with Tyrer again converting.
There were more chances to extend the scorelinne, with Adam Tangata going close but only finding a Swinton player with the offload, and Sharp was unable to take in a pass after Heaton’s break, as Halifax enjoyed a routine victory.
Swinton Lions: Mullen; Butt, Hankinson, Tyson, Fell; Billsborough, J Hansen, Bracek, Ganson, Austin; Lloyd, Thornley, Hope.
Interchanges: Hall, H Hansen, Nzoungou, Shelford.
Tries: Butt (21’)
Goals: Hankinson (0/1)
Halifax RLFC: Moss; Heaton, Tyrer, Barber, Sharp; Murrell, Johnston; Maher, Kaye, Fairbank; Butler, Grady, Grix.
Interchanges: Morris, Moore, Fleming, Tangata.
Tries: Butler (13’), Moss (27’, 33’), Johnston (38’, 55’), Fleming (40’), Tyrer (45’), Murrell (51’)
Goals: Tyrer (7/8)
|Last 8 Meetings|
|17th June 2018: Halifax RLFC win 46-4 at Heywood Road|
|15th April 2018: Halifax RLFC win 18-12 at The MBi Shay Stadium|
|25th June 2017: Swinton Lions win 13-12 at Heywood Road, Sale|
|2nd April 2017: Halifax RLFC win 38-28 at MBi Shay|
|11th September 2016: Swinton Lions win 28-26 at Heywood Road, Sale|
|3rd July 2016: Halifax RLFC win 62-12 at Heywood Road, Sale|
|10th April 2016: Swinton Lions win 38-35 at MBi Shay|
|27th July 2014: Halifax RLFC win 48-30 at Leigh Sports Village|