Widnes 36 – 10 Leigh

Widnes Vikings completed a Betfred Super League double that condemned the Centurions to bottom spot with four rounds of the regular season to go.

Not only leapfrogging their hapless opponents as they leapfrogged above them the Vikings displayed far greater energy levels and enthusiasm as they effectively sealed the game with a dominant first half display.

Veteran centre Chris Bridge, who will retire at the end of the season, got the Vikings off to the perfect start with a third minute try and Chris Houston sliced over for a double with Corey Thompson also punishing slack defence as the home side built a 20-0 interval lead.

The Centurions dominated the third quarter and hauled themselves back to within ten points with a debut try from on loan Nick Rawsthorne and an Atelea Vea effort.

But their hopes of a revival were dashed when Thompson raced clear from inside his own half after a Leigh attack broke down and Ryan Ince and Matt Whitley added further tries in the closing stages to complete a miserable evening for the Leigh faithful.

The Centurions were virtually unrecognisable from the side that had run in 50pts against Wigan in their previous game a fortnight ago and Dayne Weston, who led out the side in his final game in this country before retiring was hardly given the send-off he deserved.

Leigh Centurions head coach Neil Jukes told the BBC: “It was an awful first half. I still can’t get my head around it. We had a tough week and got some good talk going so we were confident. We even spoke about this as being a cup final.

“We felt good, we trained well – everything was good but after the first set it was gone. Maybe everyone thought we were in a good place when nobody was in a good place.

“It’s a bad as I’ve seen. It was disappointing for a game of this magnitude.”

Widnes Vikings: Danny Craven; Ryan Ince, Chris Bridge, Charly Runciman, Corey Thompson; Joe Mellor, Rangi Chase; Gil Dudson, Aaron Heremaia, Jack Buchanan, Chris Houston, Matt Whitley, Hep Cahill. Interchange: Eamon O’Carroll, Lloyd White, Alex Gerrard, Tom Olbison.

Tries: Bridge (3), Houston (6, 40), Thompson (33, 62), Ince (73), Whitley (80);
Goals: Bridge 3/5, Craven 1/2.

Leigh Centurions: Mitch Brown; Matty Dawson, Ben Crooks, Cory Paterson, Nick Rawsthorne; Ryan Hampshire, Josh Drinkwater; Lachlan Burr, Eloi Pelissier, Dayne Weston, Atelea Vea, Harrison Hansen, Glenn Stewart. Interchange: Liam Hood, Danny Tickle, Antoni Maria, Sam Hopkins.

Tries: Rawsthorne (50), Vea (57);
Goals: Drinkwater 1/2.

Referee: James Child;
Attendance: 5,604;
Half-time: 20-0.

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