Marshall left to bemoan first half horror show as Fax are held to draw

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Halifax coach Richard Marshall said his side “killed” their chances of victory against Dewsbury with a sub-par first half effort at the Shay on Sunday.

Fax trailed 14-0 at the break after returning from their week off after a sluggish, ill disciplined opening 40 minutes.

They bounced back remarkably in the second period, with a spectacular QLT solo score sparking a revival that put them ahead twice at 16-14 and 22-20, only for a Rob Worrincy interception and a late penalty from Paul Sykes to snatch a point for the lowly Rams at 22-22.

“We killed ourselves in that first half with ill discipline and poor ball control,” said Marshall.

“We ran at 45 per cent completion or something, which takes a toll in that weather.

“I think we had two sets in good ball, which just isn’t enough against any team.

“We tried to go round them rather than go through them; maybe we got a bit carried away with what we did against Sheffield when we were throwing it around on that 4G pitch.

“That’s something we’ll look at, because we’re hard to stop when we play direct.

“But we were getting put on our backs in that first half and they weren’t, which made it difficult.

“Dewsbury were desperate and we have to question why we weren’t that desperate from the start.

“I thought we were great second half, we executed what we said we were going to do at half time and during the week.

“We challenged the players at half time to put a really good half together and they did.

“Dewsbury scored off one of very few mistakes we made and then got a penalty at the end to take the point.

“I thought Will Sharp was on side when he was penalised and they kicked the goal right at the end.

“But if we’re being honest, they probably deserved something from the game.

“A point was probably fair for both sides, but I’m not sure it’s much good to us in the context of the top four.”

Fax face a potential make-or-break showdown against Featherstone in Saturday’s Summer Bash game at Blackpool (5.15), but may be without Simon Grix, who was replaced in the second half and finished the game in the dugout with an ice pack strapped to his leg.

“We’ve been taking Simon off as part of the plan but it was enforced today,” said Marshall, who said Cook Islander Adam Tangata was not yet considered to be ready for selection after a long-term foot injury.

“He’s got a groin strain which we hope isn’t too bad.

“We’ll monitor him through the week but I don’t think there’s too much else.

“Adam’s close, he is not far off but he wasn’t quite ready for this week.

“If he’s ready for next week, he’ll be in contention.”