Tyldesley 3 Widnes 51
Widnes thrashed Tyldesley 51 – 3 on Wednesday evening to qualify for the final of the Lancashire Trophy against Littleborough on Easter Monday, kick off 3.00pm
The game was played under floodlights at the obscure choice of Leigh Miners ARLFC in bitterly cold and windy conditions, but this failed to halt the exciting Widnes machine who scored seven tries on their way to their first final since 1992.
Tyldesley hit Widnes with everything they had during a frantic first ten minutes, but they were met with some solid, uncompromising Widnes defence, who had the ability to turn defence into attack whenever and wherever the opportunity arose.
After absorbing plenty of Tyldesley pressure, back to back penalties eventually got Widnes on to the scoreboard when Kevin Leadbetter converted the second of them to give them the lead.
Tyldesley’s failure to find 10 metres from the re-start saw Widnes win the scrum, and Lamb, Riley and Smith all combined for the latter to send the fullback over for the game’s opening try which was converted by Kevin Leadbetter.
Almost immediately, Widnes’ ability to turn defence into attack saw Dave Welsh make a break on the outside and his timely pass to Kevin Leadbetter, saw the winger streak away for a try which he also converted.
On 22 minutes, Kevin Leadbetter added a 30 metre penalty and it was almost game over at 20pts – nil.
Ten minutes later, Tyldesley got their only points of the game, when Dickinson converted a long range penalty.
Just a few minutes later, Leadbetter hit the post with a penalty, but Tyldesley’s relief was short lived as the winger soon crossed for his second try of the evening to leave Widnes comfortably in the lead 25 – 3 at half time.
Widnes’ extra strength and pace was evident just after half time when Dave Welsh’s crunching tackle saw the centre come away with the ball and put winger Matty Smith over in the corner, with Leadbetter adding a towering conversion. The same pair were then at it just minutes later, allowing Smith to cross for his second try.
With the game in the bag, Widnes rang the changes, but it was business as usual as Matty Smith showed both power and pace to hold off three defenders and complete a swift hat-trick of tries for the 'red and blacks'. Kevin Leadbetter showed that he had his kicking boots with him, by again adding a booming touchline conversion.
On 70 minutes, Jonny Lowe burrowed his way over for a try and Leadbetter once again converted to bring up the half century of points.
There was still time for Tyldesley to give the Widnes defence a hard time in the last few minutes, but they were in no mood to let them cross the line as they saw out the last few minutes and confirm their place in Easter Monday’s final.