Leigh Centurions Match Preview by Joshua Chapman (@Chapalar)
Whilst the eyes of the Rugby League world fall on the Etihad Stadium in Manchester this weekend with Super League’s Magic Weekend taking place, down the road the Cougars travel to Leigh Centurions looking for a much needed victory in their battle against the drop in the Kingstone Press Championship.
Following last week’s last ten collapse which saw the men from Cougar Park exit the Northern Rail Cup at the hands of the Batley Bulldogs, Paul March has come into an injury crisis heading to the Leigh Sports Village. These injuries to the likes of Marchy and James Haley will see the youth team pair of Rob Hawthorne and Ben Stead possibly get some game time against the Centurions.
With Gavin Duffy set to return following last week’s defeat to Batley and young prop forward Ryan Patchett putting in a top display, there is some highs and positives to take into this weekend’s fixture. Meanwhile, Richie Barnett and Matthew Bailey are both set for their returns from ankle and leg injuries respectively.
For the Cougars hosts this weekend, Leigh Centurions, money problems off the field has dominated all conversation relating to them in the game. This saw the club granted a loan of £17,100 back in March to help them avoid administration for the second time in three years.
On the field of play, the Centurions, who caused controversy by breaking the Championship’s ‘Bigger Clubs’ no to dual registration by agreeing a deal with the Wigan Warriors have this week signed Scott Taylor following the loss of veteran Rob Parker to a second finger operation this year.
The clubs previous encounter this season down at Cougar Park saw the Centurions run out 46-16 victors following an inspired performance by scrum half Ryan Brierley so here’s hoping that more of the same will not happen come Sunday!