The 2018 Betfred Championship got underway on Friday night when Sheffield Eagles travelled to Dewsbury for the opening fixture. Saturday afternoon saw the Swinton Lions in France to take on Toulouse Olympique XIII before three fixtures were played out on Sunday afternoon. The game at Rochdale, where the Hornets were to have taken on the Batley Bulldogs has been called off for an unfit pitch.


Sunday’s games had London Broncos hosting the newly promoted Barrow Raiders, Halifax visiting Featherstone Rovers and the eagerly anticipated visit of the Toronto Wolfpack to Leigh Centurions.


First up was a cracking game at Dewsbury where the home side took an eighth minute lead through Glover but Sykes failed to add the conversion. Worrincy added a second on twenty-one which Sykes converted for a 10-0 lead. And when Speakman added the Rams third just before the break for 14-0 the home side looked in control. It was the forty-eighth minute when the Eagles registered their first try through Offerdahl, which Thomas converted and when Toole scored their second four minutes later the Thomas conversion reduced the arrears to two points. On fifty-eight Spedding gave the visitors the lead at 18-14 thanks to the conversion. On sixty-two Morton pulled the Rams level and Sykes added the extras for a two point home advantage which they guarded until the final hooter for a 20-18 victory.


Swinton Lions were in Toulouse for the Saturday game and took a heavy defeat to the Super League hopefulls. Barthau, Laurel, and Curran established a 16-0 home lead before Shelford and Butt reduced the arrears for Swinton. Marcon made it 20-12 at the interval. A Lions penalty reduced the margin to six points before Toulouse turned on the style in the last quarter of an hour. Robin, Maurel, Marguerite, Ader, and Kheirallah all added late tries to seal a 46-14 victory.


On Sunday Featherstone Rovers scored a convincing win over the fancied Halifax at Post Office Road when they outscored their visitors by 20-4. Briscoe and Robinson scored early for the home side to give them an 8-0 lead before Heaton pulled one back for Halifax just before the break. Ridyard added Rovers third on sixty-two and Thackeray got the fourth ten minutes later, both converted by Ridyard to seal the victory.


London Broncos secured the weekends biggest victory with a 56-12 win over Championship new boys Barrow. Meadows opened the scoring, followed over the line by Williams for 12-0. Dallimore gave Barrow some hope on the half hour, but Harrison made it 18-6 at the interval. Dixon was first second half try scorer, followed by Battye, Adebiyi, Williams and Sammut put the game to bed at 34-6. Gee, Iaone, Walker made it 56-6 before a late Fieldhouse try was late scant consolation.


The afternoons eagerly anticipated game at the Leigh Sports Stadium saw a big win for the Toronto Wolfpack by 34-12.





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