Rowley’s Centurions ready for a busy schedule

Leigh forward Gareth Hock takes on the Workington defence. Photo: Paul McCarthy Photography
Leigh forward Gareth Hock takes on the Workington defence. Photo: Paul McCarthy Photography

LEIGH boss Paul Rowley says he won’t be offering any excuses as the club prepares for a busy few weeks.

On Wednesday, Leigh take on Hunslet before welcoming Featherstone to the Sports Village on Sunday.

The rearranged game is a result of Leigh’s run to the quarter finals of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup and they also have a midweek game against Dewsbury later this month.

“We have no excuses for any games going forward,” said Rowley. “Everyone’s fit and we have plenty of options.

“Fuifui Moimoi and Jamie Acton return after bans on Wednesday and we have people like Andrew Dixon waiting to come back.

“I’m happy with where we are at the moment and very confident about or chances.”

Martin Aspinwall is also pushing for a first team recall after injury and recent signing from Catalans Dragons, centre Mathias Pala is still to make his senior debut.

Leigh and Bradford have been fighting it out all season for the top spot but with two games in hand, Centurions would appear to have the upper hand. They also go to Bradford on July 19.

Yesterday, Leigh scored 50 points as they outclassed Workington at Derwent Park with Ryan Brierley scoring twice and Gareth Hock impressing in the pack with a creative display.

“I thought we were brilliant at Workington”, said Rowley.

“I would like to thank the fans who made the trip up. It wasn’t the 4,000-and-odd who were at Warrington but the players really appreciate it. I thought it was arguably the best performance of the season.

“It might not have been end-to-end or played in front of a packed stadium with some flair tries but defensively I thought we were outstanding. We played a patient, tough and aggressive game and we showed good discipline.”

There was no score after 18 minutes but Leigh produced some clinical finishing to turn the game on its head by half-time when they scored six tries to lead 32-0.

“Workington tried to slow the game down by kicking the ball dead and having slow play the balls so it was a bit scruffy,” said Rowley.

“But we took matters into our own hands by playing the game real fast so I was delighted with that performance.

“For me it was the most rewarding win of the season so far. I thought Gaz Hock was outstanding in the first half and there were lots of good performances across the park.

“It was good to give Kurt Haggerty and Matt Sarsfield some game-time and we were also able to give Tommy Goulden (an unused sub) a rest.”

Wednesday’s opponents Hunslet were thrashed at home 68-6 by Bradford. Earlier this season, Centurions won 42-6 at Hunslet though the scores were locked at 0-0 until just before half-time. With around 20 minutes left, the scores were level at 6-6 but Centurions scored seven tries in the final stages.