Leigh 40 – 0 London

Leigh Centurions moved into the last 16 of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup as their seventh straight win accounted for the Broncos at LSV.

Ben Crooks took the Man of the Match performance capped by two second half tries in an impressive team performance marked by some superb defensive work to nil the visitors.

The sixth round draw will take place live on The Chris Evans Breakfast show on BBC Radio 2 next Wednesday, April 25 (from 8.10am).

Leigh Centurions caretaker coach Kieron Purtill said: “I was really pleased with the performance. I thought we were very professional. Each week we have been building nicely. We made a focus today of our second half because we thought that even though we have been winning games our start to our second half hasn’t been great so I was pleased with that as well.

“It was very similar to when we last played them. That’s what you have to do with London a little bit, it was set for set and you have to ride the storm. They’re a good team and you have to be patient with the ball and take your opportunities when they come.

“The most pleasing thing was the zero and the boys were still scrambling in defence at the end which is the sign of a good team. The boys are confident and are enjoying coming into training. They are working hard in training and that is reflected in the performances on a Sunday.

“We are under no illusions that we are nowhere near where we should be as a club. The only way to get back to where we want to be is to carry on working hard, not giving anything up easily and if you do that when it really matters that will have a big effect on the team.”

After a tough opening quarter the Centurions broke the deadlock with a superb Matty Dawson-Jones try in the corner and added two further tries in the next five minutes as Liam Hood and Craig Hall both crossed to apply the finishing touches to sustained build-up play. Jack Owens added Leigh’s fourth try of the half in the left corner with three Ben Reynolds goals giving his side a 22-0 interval lead.

Crooks cut through twice in the space of three minutes as Leigh’s stranglehold on the tie was firmly applied and captain Harrison Hansen saw his side to the 40-mark with a converted try ten minutes from time.

New signing Ryan Bailey made an impressive debut and earned heritage number #1453. “Ryan did a good job. He did what we expected,” Purtill added. “He defended well and covered some ground in the middle, won his rucks in collision in attack and he’ll only get better with more game time. He has a presence about him and he’ll come off the bench and do a great job for us.”

Next Sunday Leigh Centurions entertain Barrow Raiders in a Betfred Championship Round 12 game before visiting Ealing Trailfinders for their third meeting with the Broncos in the space of five weeks on Sunday May 6th.

Leigh Centurions: Peter Matautia; Matty Dawson-Jones, Ben Crooks, Craig Hall, Jack Owens; Ben Reynolds, Drew Hutchison; Nathan Mason, Liam Hood, Jamie Acton, Harrison Hansen, Bodene Thompson, Jordan Thompson. Interchange: Micky Higham, Greg Richards, Ryan Bailey, Kevin Larroyer.

Tries: Dawson-Jones (18), Hood (21), Hall (23), Owens (35), Crooks (49, 52), Hansen (70)
Goals: Reynolds 6/ 7.

London Broncos: Kieran Dixon; Elliott Kear, Michael Channing, Matty Fleming, Rhys Williams; Api Pewhairangi, James Meadows; Tom Spencer, Jarrod Sammut, Eddie Battye, Jay Pitts, Matt Gee, Matt Davis. Interchange: Sam Davis, Lewis Bienek, Sadiq Adebiyi, Rob Butler.

Referee: Liam Moore;
Attendance: 2,507;
Half-time: 22-0;
Penalty count: 10-8;

Main Match Sponsor: Ascot Services;
Match Ball Sponsor: Betterlife Counselling;
Programme Sponsor: GM Projects;
Match Day Mascot: Calleigh Smallman;
Leigh Centurions Man of the Match: Ben Crooks.

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