Leigh Centurions rack up the points

Martyn Ridyard

Martyn Ridyard

First published in Centurions

Swinton Lions 6 Leigh Centurions 62

LEIGH Centurions are now nearing 1,000 points in league games after another points rampage in the Kingstone Press Championship.

Paul Rowley's men led 16-0 at half-time at the Leigh Sports Village before piling on eight tries in the second period to claim another big win.

John Duffy's side immediately tried to force play but as was the case so often in the game, they put the ball down and put themselves under a lot of pressure.

The first try came after eight minutes when Sam Barlow, playing against his brother Josh, burst through the line after crisp distribution from Sean Penkywicz to celebrate his new five-year contract. Martyn Ridyard added the goal to put Leigh 6-0 up.

Centurions had a couple of chances but couldn't take advantage until the 20th minute when a wide ball from Ridyard brought Liam Kay another four points.

Kay had earlier seen a similar effort over-ruled but there was no denying the winger this time round despite him seemingly taking the tougher option of three defenders to improve the angle for the kick.

Unfortunately, Ridyard took his conversion attempt wide but the classy stand off was again at the heart of most things constructive and he kicked to the line after 27 minutes and pounced on an error from Swinton full back Jordan Burke for only his third try of the season, converting to hand Leigh their half-time advantage.

The second half saw Leigh spark into action and four tries in a 10-minute spell made it a one sided contest as the Centurions showed no mercy to take the game away from former Leigh favourite John Duffy and his hosts.

The deluge began after 45 minutes when Ed Barber spilled the ball inside his own 20.

From the scrum Ryan Brierley fired the pass to Tom Armstrong and he blasted through the defence from 20 metres. A couple of minutes later debutant Michael Platt escaped from the defence before firing the pass infield for Brierley to get his 36th try of the year.

With Swinton on the back foot, Kurt Haggerty turned provider with an inviting grubber kick to the corner that brought Platt his first try for the club amid a scramble with Adam Higson with Ridyard keeping up his remarkable kicking form with his sixth goal.

High speed Centurions raided from deep after 55 minutes when Platt and Brierley unlocked the defence and Gregg McNally sailed to the line.

McNally then sent Armstrong over for his second just after the hour before another breakaway saw the full back stride clear after Burke spilled possession and Higson reacted quickest. The try was McNally's 50th for the club and he played his part in keeping the pace of the game too quick for Swinton.

Leigh kept the firepower coming and Penkywicz did all the running for Anthony Bate to speed to the posts unopposed for his first try of the season.

With the clock ticking down Tom Spencer picked up a suspected injury to his ACL and was left writhing in agony on the floor.

Fortunately speedy reaction from the medics ensured that a stretcher wasn't needed but with all his substitutes used up heading into the final three minutes, Centurions played with 12 men.

Swinton took advantage momentarily for Andy Ackers to score his ninth of the term from Brad Dwyer's pass. Another former Leigh favourite, Mick Nanyn, struck the conversion to make it 56-6.

Th final word however fell to Leigh when Brierley slid a kick in and Adam Higson grounded for Ridyard to complete his nine-goal and personal 22-point haul.

Leigh: McNally; Higson, Platt, Armstrong, Kay; Ridyard, Brierley; Hopkins, Penkywicz, Emmitt, Sarsfield, Haggerty, Barlow. Subs: Beswick, Bate, Aspinwall, Spencer.

Referee: Chris Leatherbarrow

Attendance: 1,342.

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