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25th Jun, 2022

RUGBY LEAGUE - Midlands Hurricanes end losing run with emphatic West Wales Raiders victory

MIDLANDS Hurricanes ran in 10 tries to end their four-game losing run in style with a convincing 56-12 win against West Wales Raiders.

Sean Croston, Kieron Lawton and James Phillips all crossed twice for Hurricanes with Hayden Freeman, Jack Dawson, Ben Stead, and Phil Cowburn also touching down for the home side at Portway.

The result means Hurricanes sit seventh in the Betfred League 1 table having secured their third win from nine matches this season.

Stand-in Head Coach Liam Welham said: “We were short of a few players, so had a meeting pre-match and discussed how there would be some playing out of position, and asked the team to grit their teeth and bear with it and we came away with a very convincing victory.

“It was high on our agenda today to be tough in defence – we knew we could score points, we’ve proven that over the season.

“Today, straight from the off, we set our stall out and I don’t think they recovered from it.

“The boys have stepped up massively over the last few weeks and matured a lot – hopefully we can carry that on next week and take it to Oldham.”

Rookie winger Phillips enjoyed a memorable professional debut as he grabbed two tries, one in either half, as Hurricanes flew out of the traps.

Tries from Croston and Lawton inside the opening 10 minutes set the home side on their way, both converted by Benn Hardcastle, before Coventry Bears academy graduate Phillips scored his first professional try on 14 minutes.

And Freeman then crossed for his eighth try of the season shortly after before Dawson scored Hurricanes fifth try on 24 minutes as he eased over the line.

The scoring did not stop there as Croston went over just past the half hour mark for his second of the afternoon with Hardcastle adding his sixth successful conversion.

However, Hardcastle was sin binned just before half time which allowed Callum Mulkeen to cross for the visitors first try of the game with a fine score from 40-metres out.

Normal service was resumed after the break as Lawton received a quick pass before finishing and Dawson crashed through on a delightful angle, before taking the return and strolling over.

West Wales crossed for the second try when Ewan Badham powered over from close range only for Hurricanes to reach the half century mark when Phillips dotted down his second try with 10 minutes left to play.

And Hurricanes took their try count to double figures for the afternoon in the final minute as Cowburn grabbed an opportunist try when he was quickest to react to a loose ball to score against his former club with Peter Ryan adding the conversion to complete the scoring.

Hurricanes are next in action away at Oldham RLFC on Sunday, June 12 with kick-off at 3pm at Vestacare Stadium.

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