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York Knights 28-18 Halifax Panthers - Match Report

York Knights returned to winning ways in the Betfred Championship by beating top six side Halifax Panthers 28-18 at the LNER Community Stadium.

There was nothing separating the two sides at 16-16 at half-time after James Cunningham, Jesse Dee and Myles Harrison tries for the hosts and a James Woodburn-Hall score and a James Saltonstall brace for the visitors.

But the Knights found an extra wind in the second half, with Harrison completing his double and Towse scoring a stunning solo try, with a Louis Jouffret penalty goal the only response from Halifax.

Andrew Henderson's side secured a vital two points that leaves them trailing the Betfred Championship Play-Off places by seven points.

The afternoon had started ominously for York, who fell behind inside five minutes when Woodburn-Hall finishes Jouffret's chip to the right corner, with the assister adding the first of three conversions.

A quick response was delivered when Oli Field broke from his own half before releasing the supporting Cunningham to finish.

Myles Harrison, who scored four of his five conversions, added the two.

Two Saltonstall tries had Halifax 10 points up, the winger first touching down from a Jouffret cut-out pass before the Panthers exploited a right edge overlap for the winger's second.

Dee cut the gap on the half-hour as the centre, returning after suspension, barged over in the right corner.

Down the same flank on the stroke of half-time, Harrison side-stepped his way over from a stunning shift from left to right, leaving the score at 16-16 after the first 40 minutes.

Halifax broke the second-half stalemate through a Jouffret penalty goal 16 minutes after the restart.

Jouffret attempted a kick down the right edge moments later which fell to Towse on his own 20. The winger showed great composure to beat Woodburn-Hall before racing under the sticks.

Just four points separated the sides until the final five minutes when rapid hands down the right saw Harrison produce a brilliant diving finish by the flag to wrap up the victory.

York: Brown, Towse, Clarkson, Dee, Harrison, Cunningham, Harris, Santi, Daley, Michael, Field, Antrobus, Thompson

Subs used: Fitzsimmons, Ta’ai. Subs not used: Ward, Pratt

Tries: Cunningham (9’), Dee (28‘), Harrison (36’, 75’), Towse (57‘)

Goals: Harrison (4/5)

Halifax: Woodburn-Hall, Walmsley, Crooks, Fonua, Saltonstall, Jouffret, Wood, Larroyer, O’Brien, Calcott, Kavanagh, Gee, Fairbank

Subs (all used): Tangata, McComb, Lannon, Inman

Tries: Woodburn-Hall (5’), Saltonstall (13’, 21’)

Goals: Jouffret (3/4)

Geoff Pryce Player of the Match in association with Isaac Poad Brewing: AJ Towse

Referee: Michael Smaill


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