Keighley Cougars 74-6 South Wales Ironmen Match Report by Joshua Chapman (@JRCSport)
KEIGHLEY Cougars responded to calls from Head Coach Craig Lingard to step up their game by routing the South Wales Ironmen.
And it was the response that Lingard was craving as his side dominated throughout the evening.
“It’s always good to get the win and when you point 70 points on the scoreboard it’s even more pleasing,” said the Cougars Head Coach.
“There are still areas in our game we need to improve on such as our composure and execution which at times let us down today.
“We completed at 61% in the second half which clearly isn’t good enough as it means we gave up a lot of ball in hand cheaply.
“If we had of completed we could have racked up the points but it’s one of them where we’re looking for positives but still looking for areas where we can improve.”
The tone was set early on as Andy Gabriel rounded to touch down after superb work from Darville and Adam Ryder to break through the defensive line.
It wouldn’t be long before the home side scored once more as Liam Darville scored the first of a personal four try haul as he finished a downfield break.
Adam Ryder then continued his impressive debut season at semi-professional level as he ran through a number of South Wales defenders to dive over from 30 metres.
Darville then sealed his second try as he raced over unchallenged after great work by Davey Dixon to set the full-back racing free.
The Ironmen wouldn’t got home nilled however as veteran Christiaan Roets handed off Vinny Finigan following a break to slide his way over the Keighley line.
But the final say of the half went to the home side as Brad Nicholson rode a tackle to touch down underneath the uprights ten minutes before the half-time hooter.
Cougars really turned the screw though as they ran in eight unanswered second half tries starting with Dixon exploiting space in the Ironmen’s line to score his first off the season.
Darville then wrapped up a first professional hat-trick after great work by Matty Beharrell to create the space.
This left a patched up South Wales solely playing for pride, but it didn’t stop Lingard’s side scoring three tries in six minutes to really rub salt into the wounds.
Dixon, celebrating a recent call-up to the Scotland squad, touched down for his second after a Vinny Finigan break made the metres and left a number of would be defenders trailing behind the play.
Josh Tonks was the next Cougars player to add his name to the scoreboard as he touched down following three consecutive penalties on the Ironmen’s line.
Scott Law then dove beneath the posts from close range after taking James Feather’s pass from the play the ball despite claims from the South Wales players that they had held the long-serving prop up over the line.
Tonks then managed to break an attempted tackle to seal his brace before referee Brandon Robinson ruled a free play following a South Wales hand knocking the ball free and from a Ryder kick through, Darville managed to get to the ball in time for his fourth.
Gabriel then wrapped the comprehensive victory up in style, diving over in the corner moments before the final hooter sounded.