Match report: Sheffield Eagles 26 Workington Town 6

John Davies looks to force his way through

John Davies looks to force his way through

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The Eagles tightened their grip on a top four position with victory over Workington Town in their final game at Castle Park.

Mark Aston’s side erased memories of the crushing defeat to Leigh last weekend, but they were made to work hard for their win after a dogged display from struggling Town.

The victory keeps the Eagles in third place, maintaining their four point advantage over the chasing pack, with four games of the regular season remaining.

Director of Rugby Aston made two enforced changes with Rob Worrincy and Mitch Stringer missing through injury.

And there was no place in the matchday squad for hooker Keal Carlile.

Pat Walker made a welcome return after a spell out with a broken toe, whilst Jamie Langley returned for a place on the bench.

Workington stunned the hosts by grabbing the first try after a cagey opening quarter to the game.

Misi Taulapapa spilled a high ball giving Town field position, and after switching the ball to the right, Brett Carter squeezed over with a full length dive in the corner.

Jarrod Sammut missed the conversion.

The Eagles were being made to work extremely hard by lowly Town, but eventually Aston’s side breached Workington’s line just past the half hour mark.

Quentin Laulu-Togagae’s bravery to run the ball on the last tackle paid dividends, after he grounded the ball at full-stretch after drifting between two tackles.

Kyle Briggs converted to give the Eagles a 6-4 lead.

Workington levelled the scores before the break when referee Andy Sweet awarded Town a penalty for a shoulder charge, and Carl Forber kicked successfully for a level game.

The Eagles stepped up their game after the break and edged back in front when Steve Thorpe forced his way through to score, after he started the move with a punching run deep into Town territory.

Briggs converted.

After soaking up some Workington pressure, the Eagles gave themselves some vital breathing space on the hour mark.

Taulapapa was the architect after he picked up the ball from a loose pass by Elliot Miller, before surging towards the line and passing to Laulu-Togagae for an easy run-in. Briggs added the extras.

The game was sealed inside the last 10 minutes when Langley’s break was finished by John Davies, and Duane Straugheir capped an excellent performance with a try at the death to add more polish to the scoreline.

Briggs missed both conversion attempts.

The Eagles face fourth place Halifax at The Shay next weekend.
Eagles: Laulu-Togagae; Turner, Yere, Smeaton, Taulapapa, Aston, Briggs, Battye, Davey, Tonks, Knowles, Davies, Walker. Interchange: Thorpe, Petersen, Langley Straugheir.

Workington: Murphy; Miller, Mossop, Thornley, Carter, Sammut, Doran, Shackley, Lucock, Walker, Lloyd, Stack, McAvoy. Interchange: Horton, Scholey, Coward, Forber.

Referee: Andy Sweet

Attendance: 506

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