Capital Victory For The Tigers
Posted: Saturday 23rd February 2019 - 8:37 PM
Castleford’s trip south to the capital ended as a resounding success on Saturday afternoon, as the Tigers ran out 40-6 winners over London Broncos.
Seven different scorers did the business for the black and amber, securing a result that maintains the Tigers’ 100% record in the 2019 Betfred Super League.
The opening five minutes had an edginess about them, with neither side giving up much to the other. However, it didn’t take long for Castleford to do something about the empty score sheet. As soon as the Tigers began offloading, gaps emerged in the London defence and Pete Mata’utia reaped the benefits, finishing from a smart Paul McShane ball.
On the fast 4G surface though, tries were inevitable, and the next came at the other end of the field as former Tigers Rhys Williams got over after a quick shift to the left.
After a consolidating period for the Tigers, it was their turn to bounce back and their next score came from a set that was all about Jesse Sene-Lefao. In unfamiliar territory for the back-rower, he put in a neat little kick for Greg Eden to pick up 20 yards out. Then, a few moments later, the Samoan flicked out a wondrous offload close to the line, right into the path of a grateful Jake Trueman who strolled over. Paul McShane added his second conversion of the evening.
From there, Castleford opened up a cushion for the first time in the contest. After the flair of Trueman’s try, it was all about brute force for the next as Junior Moors took a short ball inside the five-yard line and plowed through the Broncos defence like it wasn’t there.
With just over ten minutes to play in the first half, it looked as if London had once again pulled one back. However, Matt Fleming’s effort was turned down by the video referee as, on inspection, he’d failed to ground the ball properly.
London were then made to rue their missed opportunity as the Tigers went down the other end of the field and extended their lead before the break. Sene-Lefao himself grabbed the four-pointer this time as Eden found the second-rower on the inside following a clinical break from the black and amber.
When the two sides re-emerged after the interval, it seemed obvious that one more try from the Tigers would probably be enough to secure the two all-important Super League points, and Castleford came out with every intention of wrapping it up early.
After just three minutes of the second period, the score came and – to the delight of his teammates – it was Liam Watts who grabbed it, his first try since joining the club last season.
Further tries seemed like an inevitability from then on, with the pace and intensity of the Tigers taking its toll on the stamina of the hosts.
Castleford’s sixth of the evening was the most straightforward of the bunch, as the visitors smartly shifted the ball along the line, creating a simple overlap for Eden to exploit.
As the game approached the final quarter, the result was firmly in the bag but the Tigers kept grinding away, eager to continue a strong defensive display by keeping London scoreless in the second half.
To their credit, the Broncos remained resilient and threw the kitchen sink at the visitors. However, the class of the Tigers continuously shone through, maintaining the second half clean slate.
To add further polish to the performance, a break from Michael Shenton carved open the Broncos defence in the final ten minutes, and the proceeding offload unleashed Jordan Rankin, who followed Watts’ lead in scoring his first Castleford try.
That wrapped things up for the Tigers, capping a successful evening in the capital.
Full Time: London Broncos 6-40 Castleford Tigers
Mata’utia, Clare, Minikin, Shenton, Eden, Trueman, Rankin, Watts, McShane, Millington, Sene-Lefao, Clarkson, Massey
Milner, Moors, Egodo, Cook
Tries: Mata’utia, Trueman, Moors, Sene-Lefao, Watts, Eden, Rankin
Conversions: McShane (5/6), Rankin (1/1)
Fleming, Dixon, Morgan, Kear, Williams, Abdull, Cunningham, Adediyi, Fozard, Ioane, Pitts, Lovell, Yates
Richards, Battye, Mason, Pelissier
Conversions: Dixon (1/1)
*Match report by Ross Williams
**Photography by Melanie Allatt