Leeds Corinthians 14 Halifax 0
Halifax put over 100 points past Corinthians at Ovenden Park last season, but it was a different story on Saturday as the home side showed they were up for the fight in this Yorkshire Four clash.
They took the game to Halifax from the start, using the slope and the not inconsiderable wind. However, they were also better in the ruck and scrummage and thereby set up a platform for their nippy three quarters to threaten the defence. Corinthians also profited from failure to put them down in the tackle and time and again they were able to get the ball away. Fortunately for Halifax, Corinthians’ ball retention and handling was not of the first order and the line could be held.
That was so until the 14th minute when a pass was intercepted and the Corinthians fly half ran 40 metres unopposed to score under the posts.
Three minutes later Halifax failed to stem an attack on their left flank. Tackles were missed and the loose ball was not controlled with the result that the tricky right wing from Corinthians burst through and beat all to the touchdown.
Halifax were trying to play at pace and were losing the ball in the process; passes were forced and the loose ball was susceptible to the profitable fly hack downhill.
Both sides were ill-served by a clearly inexperienced referee some of whose decisions were incomprehensible and whose lack of grip led to some confrontations up front. Even when Halifax had more men on the field as a result of yellow cards, they were not able to profit.
They did manage to work their way upfield several times but undue haste, anxiety and an apparent unwillingness to keep the ball tight led to lost possession.
Halifax opened the second half encouragingly with a sharp break by Mark Walton down the blind side from a scrum, but his chip kick went out on the full. Jim Palfrey Smith also had a strong burst to put Halifax on the attack but the ball was lost over the line.
Corinthians battled back and again took heart from the host of errors. Clive Smith made a telling break from inside the Halifax 22 but he lacked support.