The fourth round of the Betfred Championship played out on Sunday afternoon with five games kicking off at the regular three o’clock while the Leigh Centurions game against Toulouse was scheduled for half past five.
There were two outstanding fixtures with top side London Broncos taking on second placed Toronto and that game between Toulouse and the Centurions at the Leigh Sports Village.
Featherstone were looking for a big win against early season whipping boys the Sheffield Eagles and Barrow had a tough looking trip to Batley to contend with. Elsewhere Halifax were at Rochdale and the Dewsbury Rams entertained the Swinton Lions.
London Broncos continued their one hundred percent start to the season with a sensational 47-16 win over the Toronto Wolfpack to leave them licking their wounds.
Featherstone Rovers blitzed a woeful Sheffield Eagles by 58-14 leaving the visitors anchored at the bottom of the table after a dreadful start to the season. Robinson scored twice in the opening five minutes and Ridyard added a third for 14-0 before Thomas opened the Eagles account. Briscoe and Brooks made it 20-4 at the break. Mariano extended the lead before Macani grabbed the Eagles second on forty-nine. Hartman, Thackeray and Wildie made it 48-8 before Fozard got Sheffield’s third and last of the game. Hardcastle and Thackeray, with his second, completed the scoring for Rovers for a comprehensive victory.
It was a straightforward victory for the Dewsbury Rams over Swinton, despite them only being 10-0 up at the interval through a Spicer converted try and two Sykes penalties. Brown and Hallett added second half four-pointers, the first being converted, for a final score of 20-0.
Barrow Raiders got off to a fantastic start at Batley where tries from Fieldhouse and Susino, both converted by Dallimore, saw the visitors 12-0 ahead after just ten minutes. But the early blitz woke up the home side who then kept the visitors at bay for the rest of the game. First half tries from Day, Manning and Rettie established a 16-10 interval lead and the Bulldogs never looked back. Day added a second soon after the interval before Scott picked up a brace for a final scoreline of 32-12.
It was a humdinger of a game at Rochdale where a Massam try gave the home side the lead over Halifax after just thirteen minutes. Lovett added the conversion and then a penalty goal after eighteen but a Kaye try on the stroke of half time meant that Rochdale had a slender 8-6 lead at the break. Moran extended that to 14-6 six minutes after the restart before two tries from Sharp, and one from Grix, gave the visitors a 20-14 lead on the hour. A Barber converted try on seventy nine sealed the away win for Halifax and a late Livett consolation couldn’t alter the outcome as Halifax won 26-20.
The final game of the afternoon was the late kick-off at Leigh where Toulouse Olympique XIII were the visitors. It was a real tussle in which the visitors triumphed despite having Pettybourne red carded for a high tackle on Acton on the stroke of half time. Toulouse went ahead through Curran after just three minutes but Dawson (2) and Hood fought back for Leigh to give them a 14-6 lead at the interval. Hood picked up his second to extend the lead just after the break before tries for Marguerite and Canet got the visitors back into the game at 20-16. When Bergal went over on sixty-seven it looked like he’d secured the points for the home side at 26-16 but two tries in a minute from Marguerite and Kheirallah levelled the game at 26-26 with two minutes remaining. In the last action of the game Robin scored a four pointer for Toulouse, which was converted for an unexpected 32-26 win for the twelve men from France, leaving the home side and their supporters feeling like they’d had their pockets picked.