York City Knights 12 - 32 Swinton Lions
The York City Knights gave a poor show for the Premier Sports cameras on Sunday afternoon as they suffered a sixth consecutive league defeat to the Swinton Lions at Leigh Sports Village on Sunday.
The Knights failed to produce a similar performance to one that saw them gain a comfortable victory over the Lions in the Northern Rail Cup in February, demonstrating signs that indicate that confidence is low at the Huntington Stadium. Another error-ridden display saw Chris Thorman's men fall behind 18-8 at the interval thanks to two tries from Tom Armstrong, Adam Higson and Kevin Penny, in addition to two conversions from Gavin Dodd, against replies from James Ford and George Elliott. But despite increased pressure in the second half, errors again took their toll again on the knights as further tries from Higson and Martin Ainscough and two further conversions from Dodd dwarfed York's solitary effort, which came from Elliott's second try.
Despite the scoreline, the Knights did show some encouraging signs; for example, they dominated territory and moreover look to have a real gem on their hands in dual registered half back Ben Johnston, who gave glimpses of his immense talent. Thorman and his players will be hoping that this promise soon translates into points.
The round's other fixtures saw a thriller at the Don Valley Stadium, where the boot of Martyn Ridyard proved to be the difference between the Sheffield Eagles and the Leigh Centurions as the latter ran out 34-32 winners. Featherstone suffered a heavy 60-12 defeat to Halifax; with their Challenge Cup heroics seemingly taking its toll. Dewsbury Rams regined supreme in the local derby with the Keighley, running out 29-22 victors, while the Batley Bulldogs registered a convincing 48-0 win over the struggling Hunslet Hawks.
Things don't get any easier for the Knights as they once again welcome the Sheffield Eagles to the Huntington Stadium on Thursday night, kick off 7.30pm. The Eagles may find themselves in a lowly seventh place, but that does not mean that they are a forced to be reckoned with, having already defeated the Knights heavily twice this season, most recently in the Challenge Cup 50-12 three weeks ago. For those who cannot make it to the ground, the game is live on Premier Sports.