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03 October 2022



IAN RIGG Heywood Road, Sunday

The Lions sealed their return to the championship with a winning try from Jack Hansen scoring as the hooter sounded in a pulsating game watched by a noisy following band of fans from both sides.

Jason Tali put Doncaster ahead in the third minute when he finished off a try in the corner, but the conversion attempt hit the posts and bounced out. It was all Doncaster in the early stages and Sam Smeaton had a good chance to increase the lead, but some good tackling held him short of the line on the last tackle. Rising star Leon Ruan then also had a chance but he knocked on at the paly the ball thirty metres out. The Lions first attack came on seventeen minutes when Hansen launched a kick towards the try line but Tali was there to stop the danger picking up the kick and clearing his line, but Jordan Case did put then Lions on the board when he took a cut out pass from Nick Gregson to race in under the posts and Dan Abram added the simple conversion. They could have gone further ahead on twenty-seven minutes, but Lewis Hatton could not control a long pass with the line open. Will Hope then made a break down the middle on the half hour with only the fullback to beat but he was pulled back by the referee for a forward pass. Robinson launched a kick to the corner for Tali to chase but he could not control the ball with the line open. The scores were level six minutes from the break when the Lions were penalised for a high tackle and Robinson added the conversion.

The game really got going after the break with both sides trading chances and Abram was high tackled in the forty-first minute and from the resulting penalty pressure Matty Wilkinson went close only to be tackled short on the last tackle. Next it was Doncasters chance and Misi Taulapap made a nice break down field and with Abram approaching for the tackle he offloaded to Tali who couldn’t hold the pass. Lewis Hatton and Keelan Foster then both had chances in their opposition tens abut neither could keep hold of the ball. Jayden Hatten then had a good chance taking a high ball near the line and it took good defence to hold him out. Doncaster took the lead again on fifty-two minutes when a move to the right saw Tom Holliday go over tight in the right corner but Robinson could not convert from the touch line. The Lions had more pressure on the Doncaster line just after theis try but some excellent defence was needed to hold them out and they too had another good chance minutes later, but ball handling again let them down. Gregson thought he had scored for the Lions when he cut past two defenders to score by the posts but the was brought back by the referee for an obstruction in the build-up. Watson Boas replaced Greg Burns and he almost had an instant impact when he stabbed a short kick through to the line but forced a goal line drop out.

Taulapapa lost control of a pass near the Lions line on sixty-six minutes and Ruan caught the ball in an offside position, and they moved up field from the penalty and this ended with Gregson sending another nice short pass for Mitch Cox to finish off scoring by the posts and Abram converted to put his side ahead. The Lions were coming strong in the final stages seeing more chances coming their way and Jayden Hatton was unlucky not to score from another Hansen high kick. Doncaster were not finished and were working the ball nicely down the right and Halliday broke clear and looked all on a scorer, but he was knocked into touch by a super try saving tackle by Abram which would have put them back ahead. Cox had another chance with two minutes left but he too lost control of the ball with the line at his mercy but on the very last play the Lions finalised their promotion when Hansen broke a tackle and then ran away from two more to score in the right corner as the hooter sounded and the crowd went wild but Abram could not add the conversion from the touchline. A jubilant Lions Coach Allan Coleman commented at the end of the game “I am really proud of this bunch of guys who have working so hard to achieve this goal and get us back in the Championship where we belong”



  1 Dan Abram

  2 Mike Butt

  4 Max Roberts

28 Jayden Hatton

  5 Richard Lepori

13 Nick Gregson

  7 Jack Hansen

16 Louis Brogan

14 Matty Wilkinson

23 Jordan Case

11 Rhodri Lloyd

12 Mitch Cox

25 Lewis Charnock

Subs (all used)

31 Brad Holrod

  8 Will Hope

17 Jack Spencer

10 Lewis Hatton

Tries: Case (20), Cox (27), Hansen (40)

Goal: Abram 2/3


  1 Mis Taulapapa

  2 Tom Halliday

  3 Robbie Storey

  4 Jason Tali

  5 Travis Corion

  6 Ben Johnston

  7 Connor Robinson

14 Alex Holdstock

  9 Greg Burns

10 Brandan Wilkinson

11 Sam Smeaton

12 Leon Ruan

13 Loui McConnell

Subs (all used)

17 Watson Boas

18 Josef Fella

19 Keelan Foster

20 Dave Peterson

Tries: Tali (3), Halliday (12)

Goals: Robinson 1/2

Penalty Count: 7-9 Half-time: 6-6

Referee: James Vella Attendance:  1086

SCORING SEQUENCE: 0-4, 6-4, 6-6, 6-10, 12-10. 16-10.


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