Fax stay in the four after Moss and Johnston both score twice in big win at Swinton

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Halifax coach Richard Marshall stayed in the Championship top four with a 46-4 win at Swinton on a weekend when most of the other contenders also won.

Fax had full back Kieren Moss and half back Ben Johnston in two-try form - and young back rower Chester Butler a marauding threat down the right edge - as they racked up a decisive 30-4 half time lead at Heywood Road.

Victory leaves them fourth, just a point behind second-placed Toulouse, with the five teams chasing runaway leaders Toronto all covered by just two points with six games of the regular season to go.

“We needed to win,” said Marshall, whose side return to the Shay next weekend when they host Batley.

“It’s tight at the top and all the teams look like they are coming into form.

“We’ve got some really tough games coming up.

“I thought we were very good with the ball at times, particularly when we were doing the damage in the first half, and we scored some nice long range tries.

“We executed the plan really well in the opening half.

“Chester was good; he made a couple of breaks, scored a try and looked quick and strong.

“He’s improving every week at the moment.

“Kieren looked really dangerous out the back, sniffing out a couple of tries, and he’s only going to get better.

“He talked a lot more today and was in the right place at the right time.

“He’s a quality player and we need to find the best ways to utilise him.”

The second half was a disjointed affair, with a 15 minute break in play following an injury to Swinton back George Tyson and Fax’s withdrawal of skipper Scott Murrell, shortly after he scored his side’s final try with half an hour remaining, both having an impact.

“There were a couple of stoppages, some long stoppages, for injuries to their players - and we hope George Tyson is okay - which probably disrupted the flow of the game a little bit,” said Marshall, who recalled winger Will Sharp in place of James Saltonstall, who missed the game to be at the birth of his son.

“I changed the team around quite a lot in the second half.

“I thought Elliot Morris looked alright in the second row; he looked a threat on the left edge.

“That’s what we do, try and develop the whole player rather than pigeon holing them into one position.

“People need to step up when Scott goes off the field.

“That’s what he offers, that game management, and you can see the difference when he’s not there.

“But without putting those players in that predicament we ain’t going to know.”