Leigh boss Rowley puzzled as rivals celebrate bonus point defeat

Leigh Centurions coach Paul Rowley
Leigh Centurions coach Paul Rowley
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LEIGH Centurions coach Paul Rowley said he was a bit bemused to see Workington’s players and fans celebrate a bonus point at Derwent Park yesterday.

The Cumbrians staged a second half fight-back after Leigh raced into a 22-4 lead and because they got within 12, they claimed a point despite losing 28-16.

“It was a strange feeling to see a club celebrate a loss,” said Rowley. “I’m not sure what the pleasure is in that. We are a winning club. We don’t celebrate defeat.

“I think we underperformed but we still had three tries disallowed. I am proud of the boys - it resembled the game at Keighley early in the season in that it was slow and scrappy.

“We came here for the win, we got the win and we drove home happy.”

Leigh’s win was their 16th in a row - extending a record breaking run which sees them seven points clear at the top of the Kingstone Press Championship and reach the last eight of the Tetley’s Challenge Cup.

Rowley was also unhappy with some of the calls by the officials in a game he called “scrappy and slow.”

“I was frustrated about a lot of things that went on,” he said.

“For example a bloke was put on report for twisting a man’s ankle - if you’ve seen it there’s a decision to be made. I think when you get a local referee like we did with Gareth Hewer you need them to be stronger than he was yesterday.”

Rowley said talk in the Cumbrian press prior to the game about Leigh being a full-time team was simply a case of Workington trying to take the pressure of themselves.

“Workington talked themselves down in the run-up to the game claiming we were full-time which is of course nonsense. Our boys were back at work on Monday morning.

“Likewise I’m sick of hearing this phrase about us having loads of money - we don’t. What we do have is a strong youth policy and a lot of players that have come through our system.

“I tried to sign a couple of Workington players last year and we couldn’t get anywhere near matching their contracts.”