One of the games of the second round of the 2019 Coral Challenge Cup was in Kirkstall, Leeds as the Milford Marlins played hosts to Lock Lane from Castleford in local derby to set the pulses racing.

Milford are in the National Conference Division One whereas their visitors Lock Lane ply their trade in the National Conference Premier, Although both sides were in division one last season, Lock Lane gaining promotion. Both sides were desperate to progress, both for local bragging rights and the chance to take on one of the semi-pro sides in the third round.

Conditions were perfect on Leeds Rhinos 4G training pitch as the sides took the field.

Lock Lane opened the scoring through full-back Lewis Price after just four minutes after relentless early pressure on the Milford line. The conversion was added easily by Coner Land for a 6-0 lead.

Milford came close to scoring on ten minutes but the pinpoint grubber hit the post pad. Good defence from Milford kept Lock Lane at bay while they looked to score themselves on the break.

A superbly worked Josh Nathaniel try got Milford on the board when he took the inside pass to cross under the sticks. The conversion was added by Oxtoby to level the scores with twenty-nine on the clock.

Nathaniel got his second three minutes later, this time crossing on the right corner off a well-worked passing move. Ryan Oxtoby couldn’t add the extras but the home side were now 10-6 ahead.

Craig Duncan responded on thirty-seven as he finished off a Lock Lane passing move by evading a couple of attempted tackles to ground on the line, after crossing on his back by the right corner flag. The kick was missed and the game was level again at 10-10.

Milford got a penalty for interference with nine minutes on the clock in the second half and Oxtoby slotted the ball between the uprights from ten metres out to give the home side a two point advantage.

Two minutes later a Josh Parle break and superb pass put Oxtoby over under the sticks. He converted his own try and now the division one side were 18-10 ahead, the Leeds side seemed to be taking control.

Danny Sowerby scored a try out of nothing for Lock Lane on sixteen as he bust the Milford line and went under the sticks on the angle. Coner Land added the conversion and the sides were only two points apart.

A scruffy looking try from Lock Lane edged Lock Lane into the lead when Tom Sowerby picked up a loose ball and ducked under the tackles to score from short range. Milford stood and watched, expecting a knock-on, but the referee pointed at the spot. Land added the conversion for 22-18.

Tom Sowerby picked Milfords pockets as he went twenty metres for his second try on sixty-six. Again, Land was able to convert with the boot for 28-18, the balance of power had shifted in a devastating ten minute spell from the visitors.

With five minutes left Matt Brocksoh took a delightful flicked pass to go over in the corner through a crowd of Lock Lane defenders. Oxtoby could not convert against the wind, Milford now eight points behind. 

Land missed an attempted drop goal with a couple of minutes left but it would have only run the clock down further as the away side won the game by 28-22.

This was a terrific afternoons cup rugby league between two whole-hearted teams who threw eveything that they had into the game. There were very few errors, despite some massive defensive efforts from both teams, and in the end it was the Premier Division side from Castleford who took the win and made progress into the third round.

Milford Marlins: Oxtoby (T, 3G), Brocksoh (T), Bacon, Nathaniel (2T), Hamill, Snellgrove, Parle, Ramsdon, Coates, Elkington, Plunkett, McRea, Barkor. Subs: Sunley, Jonson, Lovoridge, Hulme.

Lock Lane: Price (T), Duncan (T), Southern, Bull, Sowerby T (2T), Land (4G), Sowerby D (T), Lidbury, Savage, Holmes, Newbould, Backhouse, Siddons. Subs: Lee, Tagg, Firth, Hesketh.

Referee: A Moore.

Half-Time: 10-10.

Full-Time: 22-28.

Attendance: .


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