Ian Golden and Andy Morgan review the weekend’s action in matches that featured Wales internationals and hopefuls. Pic: North Wales Crusaders
North Wales Crusaders picked up another win in Betfred League One, comfortably beating Midlands Hurricanes, despite playing “on the road” at Glan Conwy. It was a successful club day for the Crusaders as they staged a junior event in the morning, whilst the day was attended by many of their women’s side, who launched the previous week. Rob Massam (pictured with players from those sides) scored a late brace of tries for Crusaders. Dewsbury Rams continued their relentless march to the title, as Owen Restall scored a try in their latest win. The Rams kept a Rochdale Hornets side that included Sion Jones, scoreless. Harry Boots, Ewan Badham, Ieaun Badham and Jake Lloyd were all part of the Cornwall team that lost on their travels against Hunslet.
In the Women’s Challenge Cup quarter-finals, Bethan Dainton scored a try for Leeds Rhinos as they beat Leigh Leopards 54-0. However, Cardiff Demons went out of the competition as co-incidentally they were beaten by York Valyyrie by the same score. Welsh internationals Eleri Michael, Shaunni Davies, Rhi Parker, Lauren Aitken, Sara Jones, Charlie Mundy, Ffion Jones and Joeann McGuire were part of the Cardiff line-up. Bethan will come up against her Wales team-mate Carys Marsh in the semi-finals as her Wigan Warriors side beat Huddersfield Giants. Gil Dudson was in the Warrington Wolves side in the men’s Challenge Cup quarter-finals as they were edged out by Wigan Warriors.
🏆 Man of The Match
Today’s Man of The Match as voted for by DS Smith – Caleb Aekins.
— Featherstone Rovers (@FevRoversRLFC) June 18, 2023
In the men’s Betfred Championship, league leaders Featherstone Rovers bounced back from their first league defeat of the season to record a thumping victory over London Broncos, with Caleb Aekins starring and scoring two tries. Toulouse Olympique backed up that notable win against Rovers with a comfortable win at home to Sheffield Eagles, as Josh Ralph crossed for the final try of the game.
Ben Evans was in the starting line-up for Barrow Raiders as they claimed a valuable win in their battle against relegation. The Raiders got the better of Widnes Vikings, who had Matty Fozard at hooker. Chester Butler was named in the Bradford Bulls side prevented from making it six wins in a row by Halifax Panthers, although the Bulls only claimed a share of the spoils courtesy of a late penalty goal.
Curtis Davies scored the opening try in what was only the second win of the season for Newcastle Thunder, as they dragged Keighley Cougars into the relegation dogfight with an 18-16 victory. Swinton Lions currently occupy one of the two relegation places, with their cause to survive dealt a blow with defeat at the hands of Batley Bulldogs, who had Elliot Kear in the side. Rhodri Lloyd and Gavin Bennion featured for the Lions.
In Australia, Bradman Best grabbed a try for Newcastle Knights but it was another narrow defeat, this time against Sydney Roosters. Sam Hughes was in the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs reserves side as they beat Penrith Panthers 30-16.