Leigh 22 – 8 Warrington

Leigh Centurions earned their third successive home win of the Betfred Super League season and their first win over Warrington since 1988 in front of the Sky Sports cameras.

Last season’s grand final and Challenge Cup finalists stay rooted to the bottom after their fifth successive defeat.

Man of the match Gareth Hock produced another top display, scoring two tries to spearhead Leigh’s victory charge.

Centurions Head Coach Neil Jukes pressed Hock’s claims for an international recall.

“Why not?” he said. ” He carried the ball as strong as anybody else. There were current internationals out there and he was head and shoulders above a lot of them.

“Gaz has got a bit of a tag about him but he’s a loveable rogue and his discipline has been very good. Off the field he is brilliant. He is one of the first in and he works really hard.

“He had an unbelievable pre-season and I asked him to lead from the front.”

Jamie Acton, Sam Hopkins and Atelea Vea were other stand-outs in the pack while Matty Dawson was outstanding in the backs.

Leigh have already bettered their points tally from their only previous Super League campaign in 2005 when they earned two wins and one draw throughout the campaign.

Jukes said: “It was a real tough opening six games and to get 50 per cent of them as wins is a real credit to the boys. We’re finding our feet, we’re getting battle hardened.

“It’s a cauldron here. We’re starting games well but we’re also finishing them strong so we’re getting some consistency. Our defence was outstanding. Warrington are a class side and we did a real good job to put them under pressure,

“It never looked in doubt. I was disappointed with the try we conceded at the end but I can’t complain too much.”

Magnificent defence again underpinned Leigh’s victory as they restricted the Wolves to Tom Lineham’s try nine minutes from time.

Leigh raced into a 10-0 lead after 16 minutes with tries by Hock and Ben Crooks, Hock blasting over from close range before Crooks brilliantly exploited a free play to chip ahead and win the race for the touchdown.

Ben Reynolds added one conversion and a penalty before the Wolves got on the scoreboard with a Kurt Gidley penalty on the stroke of half-time.

Gidley was making history by wearing a playercam but the camera was removed at half-time due to “technical issues.”

Each side lost a player to the sin bin with Glenn Stewart and Lineham both incurring the wrath of referee Ben Thaler.

Leigh exploited Lineham’s absence by working an overlap for Adam Higson to score their third try before Hock wrapped up a notable win with his second powerhouse try.

Leigh Centurions: Ryan Hampshire; Adam Higson, Ben Crooks, Mitch Brown, Matty Dawson; Ben Reynolds, Josh Drinkwater; Gareth Hock, Micky Higham (captain), Jamie Acton, Atelea Vea, Glenn Stewart, Harrison Hansen. Interchange: Eloi Pelissier, Danny Tickle, Sam Hopkins, Lachlan Burr.

Tries: Hock (7, 68), Crooks (16), Higson( 62). Goals: Reynolds 3/ 6.

Warrington Wolves: Jack Johnson; Matty Russell, Rhys Evans, Ryan Atkins, Tom Lineham; Kevin Brown, Kurt Gidley (Captain); Chris Hill, Daryl Clark, Mike Cooper, Jack Hughes, Ben Westwood, Joe Westerman. Interchange: Ashton Sims, Brad Dwyer, Andrew Savelio, Harvey Livett.

Try: Lineham (71); Goals: Gidley 1/ 1, Livett 1/ 1.

Referee: Ben Thaler; Attendance: 7,011; Half-time: 12-2.

Thank you to our match sponsors:
Main Match Sponsor: JR’s Taxis
Associate Sponsor:
24/7 Technology
Match Ball Sponsor:
Bents Garden & Home
Programme Sponsor:
Genlec

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