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04 February 2019
Sheffield Eagles claimed the two-points on offer in the opening round of the Championship season at the Olympic Legacy Park.
Swinton Lions conceded 64 points as Sheffield Eagles claimed the opening two-points of the season at Olympic Legacy Park.
The Lions’ season opener was one to forget as they suffered a twelve-try defeat to Mark Aston’s new look Eagles side on a bitterly cold day in front of a record crowd.
Swinton’s day started off with disaster, after only eighteen seconds when Will Hope went down in the tackle with what looked like a really bad leg injury, in which he is now being treated for.
Eagles opened their scoring account after five minutes when former Lion Ollie Davies went over on the right, but Pat Walker missed the conversion. Four minutes later Ryan Millar slipped several tackles to score by the posts and Walker converted this one. The Lions then had a few chances with the ball but could not get past the Eagles defence and James Glover increased their lead on twenty-two minutes when he darted over from close range but again the conversion was missed. The Lions defence was getting cut to shreds in the final minutes of the half and Eagles ran in three more tries with Josh Guzdek, Corey Makelim and Joel Farrell all going over and Walker converted two of them to send his side in with a thirty point lead at the break.
The Lions came out early in the second half probably with their ears ringing from the half time team talk and it worked as they got on the scoreboard five minutes after the restart with Ryan Gray going over in the corner but Oscar Thomas could not convert. Eagles soon hit the straps again and former Featherstone man Anthony Thackeray then scored a twelve minute hat-trick with Walker again converting two of them and the fifty points came up on sixty-five minutes when Ben Blackmore scored and Walker converted. Thackeray then scored a fourth try before leaving the field and this was converted too.
Rob Fairclough and Joel Farrell were despatched to the sin bin with seven minutes left for fighting and the Lions hit back with a second try four minutes from time when Billy Brickhill scored his first Lions try and Oscar Thomas kicked his first Lions goal but it was too little too late and with two minutes left Millar scored again on the left and Walker converted off the touchline.
Full time: Sheffield Eagles 64-10 Swinton Lions
Ian Rigg reporting from Olympic Legacy Park.
Eagles: Guzdek, Millar, Glover, Crookes, Blackmore, Walker, Thackeray, Knowles, Davey, James, Farrell, Davies, Brown.
Subs: Makelin, Pick, Esslemont, Burns.
Tries: Davies (5′), Millar (9′,78′), Glover (22′), Guzdek (30′), Makelim (33′), Farrell (36′), Thackeray (50′,57′,62′,70′), Blackmore (65′)
Goals: Walker 8/12
Sin-Bin: Farrell (73′)
Lions: Hansen, Gray, Ashton, Lloyd, Butt, Thomas, Fairclough, Bennion, Waterworth, Hatton, Jones, Halton, Hope.
Subs: Austin, Brickhill, Jones, Kenga.
Tries: Gray (45′), Brickhill (76′)
Goals: Thomas 1/2
Sin-Bin: Fairclough (73′)
FT: 64-10 HT: 30-0
Referee: Matt Rossleigh
Photo credits: Pete Green & Emily Parker