U19s Fall Agonisingly Short
Posted: Monday 11th February 2019 - 2:27 PM
Castleford’s young Tigers put in a great performance on Saturday afternoon, in preparation for their 2019 Academy Championship campaign.
However, the hosts were unable to begin their year with a victory, as St Helens stunned the Tigers with two tries in the final minute, securing a 30-24 win for the Saints.
Fielding a side littered with debutants, the Tigers were impressive for large portions of the game and were extremely unlucky to not come away with a result against a strong Saints outfit. Regardless of the score line, Tony Smith will be able to take plenty of positives away from the pre-season run-out.
The likes of Brad Jinks, Ben Dobson and Lewis Peachey all put in big efforts up the middle, while wingers Lewis Carr and Wayne Bannister combined for three tries between them – an especially remarkable achievement by the latter, as he only discovered he was starting the game ten minutes before kick-off, due to an injury in the warm-up to Jacob Doyle.
Prop forward Bob Jowett made an instant impact for the Tigers in the first half, scoring one of the tries of the game just moments after coming off the Castleford bench. Jowett channelled his inner half-back, smartly following a fellow Tiger up in support before latching onto the ball as it popped out of the tackle.
This try took the Tigers into the break four points to the good, and things looked good from a black and amber perspective at that point.
Likewise in the second half, Tony Smith’s side were largely in control. Even when talented Saints stand-off Jack Welsby – a contender for man of the match – clawed the visitors back midway through the second period, there was no panic from the Tigers as points always seemed likely.
Their faith was justified too as - in the final quarter - Dobson scored a truly exceptional try from 30 yards out. The loose forward ran strong and true, giving the St Helens defenders no chance of stopping him as he charged towards the line.
The feeling on the sidelines was quite rightly that the victory was in the Tigers’ grasp as the seconds ticked down. However, Welsby had other ideas as we entered the final moments. The half-back picked Castleford’s pocket before racing off for his second try of the afternoon. The conversion levelled the scores at 24-each, but that proved not to be the game’s final twist.
With time for just one more set of six remaining, Saints threw caution to the wind, kicking and then dealing with the ball in broken play. The Tigers’ defence scrambled, but couldn’t quite stop Saints running in a game-winning try from deep as time expired.
Full Time: Castleford Tigers 24-30 St Helens
Castleford Tigers Academy Squad
Priest, Bannister, Graham, Storey, Carr, Sweeting, Westwood, Peachey, Jinks, Jowett, Summers, Collinson, Fella, Morgan, Molden, Hodgson, Attley, Howe, Bean, Tate, Dickinson, Hall
St Helens Academy Squad
Baxter, Betts, Brooks, Dodd, Foster, Hatton, Hutchings, Kellett, Lee, Maloney-Ward, H. McDaid, K. McDaid, Nash, Nisbet, Pye, Rizzelli, Royle, Sambou, Simm, Siyani, Smith, Welsby, Wingfield
*Match report by Ross Williams
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