Late penalty gives Marcon the chance to kick Toulouse to Shay victory

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Halifax suffered a third Championship loss of the season, with a late penalty from Toulouse winger Paul Marcon steering the French side to a dour 12-10 win at the Shay.

In a game that was always close on the scoreboard, the visitors dominated for long stretches of the second half without every managing to distance a stubborn, injury hit Fax line up.

In the end, a controversial penalty from referee Chris Campbell, whose performance was contentious at best, gave Marcon the chance to break a 10-10 deadlock with just four minutes remaining with a super kick from close to the sideline, 40 metres out.

It was a decision that was cruel on the alleged offender Jacob Fairbank, who turned in a full blooded 80 minute performance, first in the middle, then in the second row.

It capped a frustrating afternoon for Fax, who had looked in position for a drop goal on the previous set, only for half back Ben Johnston to lose possession trying to create a try down the blindside.

On a slate grey Yorkshire afternoon, with rain falling steadily, Halifax had suffered a blow in the first minute, losing the Australian prop Mitch Cahalane to concussion after a collision with his former teammate Clement Boyer.

The home side seemed to recover well enough, scoring the first try when centre Steve Tyrer pounced on a sliderule kick from Scott Murrell to score.

Tyrer added the conversion from the sideline for a 6-0 lead and Fax might have scored again from a similar play on the opposite flank, but James Saltonstall just failed to gather the ball under pressure from the defender.

Toulouse, with the Cook Islands stand off Johnathon Ford outstanding, had already manufactured a couple of half chances by the time they drew level through winger Gregory White.

White had actually appeared to completely miss Ford’s kick to the corner, but referee Chris Campbell awarded the try anyway, Paul Marcon adding a super conversion.

Fax went ahead again as half time approached, Tyrer kicking an easy penalty, but a moment of magic from Ford set up centre Bastien Ader on the stroke of half time as the French side went to the break with a 10-8 lead.

The visitors dominated territory and possession during a one-sided third quarter, but it was the home side who managed to level the scores, largely against the run of play, when Johnston was taken high and Tyrer tied things up with an angled penalty 15 minutes from time.

In the end though, it was Toulouse who held their composure to claim victory.

Halifax: Sharp; Saltonstall, Tyrer, Butler, Woodburn-Hall; Murrell, Johnston; Boyle, Kaye, Cahalane, Tangata, Grix, Fairbank. Subs: Morris, Mammone, Ambler, Robinson

Toulouse: Maurel; White, Ader, Planas, Marcon; Ford, Robin; Boyer, Marion, Canet, Mika, Curran, Bentley. Subs: Kriouache, Pech, Hepi, Leha

Referee: Chris Campbell