Leigh get job done with thumping victory at Batley


Leigh Centurions ticked off another journey in their quest for promotion from the Betfred Championship, winning resoundingly 52-0 away at Batley Bulldogs.

Live in front of the Premier Sports cameras, Adrian Lam’s side comfortably got the job done to earn the two points, though remain second behind leaders Featherstone Rovers whose boss Brian McDermott was also present at the Fox’s Biscuits Stadium. The pair meet in the 1895 cup final on May 28.

In a blistering first half performance which saw Keanan Brand rack up a hat-trick of tries, Leigh racked up 28 points before adding a further 24 to that tally in the second half, all without conceding any at the other end.

Slow to Start 

It must be said that for large periods at the beginning of both halves, Leigh didn’t click nor find that crucial last pass to break through the line.

In fact, it took them 15 first half minutes to open the scoring, though from there on it became a complete whitewash against a Batley side who had headed into the contest unbeaten in five and occupying a play-off spot.

Winger Brand hit twice in quick succession to get things started, both diving finishes in at the corner. His partnership with full-back Caleb Aekins was on show for all to see, ruthless near the line.

Aaron Smith then forced his way over after a good dummy from Ben Reynolds had gained the Centurions some metres, with Krisnan Inu almost perfect with the conversions on the night, missing just once.

Brand completed his hat-trick and there was still time in the opening 40 minutes for Edwin Ipape to barrage his way over, simply running through an opponent to touch the ball down.

28-0 up at the interval, the contest was already over, but Batley came out at the restart and were on top in the early stages.

Floodgates Opening

Some early pressure saw them held up over the line before forcing a drop out from the visitors, but it was at that point their attacking threat diminished when Luke Hooley dropped a clanger in knocking on straight from the kick.

Typical of the opening 15 minutes of the second half from both sides, that mistake felt very much the moment that Leigh secured a ‘nilling’ of their West Yorkshire counterparts.

Papua New Guinean Nene MacDonald uncharacteristically didn’t end up on the scoresheet, though forced a drop out which again saw an error – Mark Ioane spilling the ball.

Eventually, Leigh did get themselves another try through Joe Mellor on 57 minutes, opening the floodgates oncemore. Joe Wardle and Inu then both got over the line before Ipape rounded it off with the pick of the bunch five minutes from time.

Picking the ball up on the halfway line, he showed lightning pace to breeze through a now weary Bulldogs defence, swan diving over between the sticks bang in front of the travelling Leigh faithful.

Very much job done for the Leythers who welcome Workington Town to the Leigh Sports Village on Sunday (May 22). Batley meanwhile play host to relegation-threatened London Broncos on the same afternoon.

Follow us on Twitter @ProstInt


About Author

Comments are closed.