Fax foiled by Forber’s last-gasp penalty

Andy Bracek
Andy Bracek
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Workington Town 20

Halifax 20

Halifax were denied a narrow victory at Derwent Park by a last minute penalty from Carl Forber.

The draw for Town ended a run of five straight defeats yet in an absorbing final quartter of an hour they seemed to have ended the jinx with a crucial win.

Trailing 14-12 they got over under the posts six minutes from time through prop Marc Shackley and Forber’s easy conversion hinted at an overdue win.

But three minutes later Halifax had regained the lead. Although the ball went to ground when it was being passed quickly to the left, prop Andy Bracek picked-up and was able to go the last 10 metres and score with two Town dedfenders hanging onto him. Steve Tyrer converted.

There was still to be another twist to this remarkable game when, from the clever re-start kick, Town gathered and Halifax were penalised 20 metres from their own posts. Forber made it four from four as he found the target to earn the draw.

It had been Town, playing with the wind, who scored first on 14 minutes. Clever play by Forber with a reverse pass sent Jack Murphy shooting over for a well-taken try which Forber converted.

Seven minutes later Halifax were level. Good hands ended with Ben Johnston going in under the posts for Tyrer to convert.

Six minutes before the interval Halifax went in front. Substitute Keith Holden darted over from acting half-back to score wide-out.

The first try of the second-half was always going to be important and it went to Halifax 11 minutes after the restart.

A lovely little break from Ben Johnston put Halifax in a great attacking position and his well-timed pass released Tyrer down the touchline. He got to the corner and dived over with Murphy hanging on.

At 14-6 Halifax endeavoured to close out the game but a super try from Wigan’s Dom Manfredi and a determined effort from Shackley set-up a nerve tingling finish.

Workington Town: Murphy, Manfredi, Mossop, Connor, Carter, Powell, Forber, Coward, Mattinson, Shackley, Stack, Farrell, McAvoy. Subs: C. Phillips, Rooney, B. Phillips, Lupton.

Halifax: Fieldhouse, Saxton, Tyrer, Cowling, Reittie, Mennell, Johnston, Ambler, Kaye, Bracek, Manning, Divorty, Adamson. Subs: Holden, Holden, Heaton, Davies, Casey.

Referee: Joe Cobb (Newton-le-Willows)

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