Saints lose out in golden point drama

Saints left London empty-handed after a Morgan Smith drop goal in Golden Point extra time secured a dramatic 23-22 win for the southern side.

Two early tries from James Roby and Luke Thompson put Saints in control, but London responded through tries from on loan Ryan Morgan and James Cunnigham. Mark Percival then put Saints back in front early in the second half before Morgan grabbed his second for London.

Pitts gave the hosts the lead before Regan Grace scored a dramatic last minute try in the corner which Richardson converted off the touchline to send the game into golden point. Unfortunately for Saints it was London who won it through a Smith drop goal.

Playing on London’s artificial pitch, Saints came flying out of the traps and it didn’t take long for us to take the lead. Captain Roby picked the ball up from dummy half and crashed over underneath the posts giving Saints an early 6-0 lead with Richardson adding the extras.

Saints were in again minutes later after a Percival break put Saints in excellent field position. On the next play, the ball found its way to Richardson who put a neat kick through and the ball hit a London defender and landed in Thompson’s hands for the forward to score. Richardson adding the two extending Saints lead to 12-0 inside 10 minutes.

London hit back after an offload from young full back Jack Welsby was intercepted by Morgan and the centre scored under the posts. Dixon adding the extras.

In the final minute of the first half Cunningham dummied, found a gap in the line and went through the gap to score. Dixon adding the extras to tie the game at the break.

London started the second half dominantly, putting Saints under pressure and forcing a goal line drop out, but Saints defence stood firm and forced London to knock on. Saints capitalised on the error when Roby made a break up the middle and on the next tackle Richardson found Grace who passed the ball back inside to Percival who gathered on the second attempt to score. Richardson, this time was unable to add the extras.

London replied minutes later mind after the ball found its way out wide to Morgan and he pushed his way over in the corner. Dixon, like Richardson was unable to add the extras leaving the game tied at 16-16 with 25 minutes remaining.

London thought they had won it late on after a kick through from Jordan Abdull was pounced on by Pitts who scored. Dixon added the two giving London a 22-16 lead.

Saints threw everything at London in the final 10 minutes, but London’s defence stood firm until a minute from time when a flowing move from right to left ended with Grace scoring in the corner. Richardson, with the stadium in silence, kicking the touchline conversion to tie the game and send it into Golden Point.

Two minutes into golden point a Saints knock on put London in prime position and Smith dropped the goal to give the hosts a 23-22 victory.

Match Summary:

London Broncos: Walker, Dixon, Morgan, Kear, Williams, Abdull, Smith, Battye, Cunningham, Krasniqi, Pitts, Gee, Yates.

Interchanges: Richards, Ioane, Fozard, Butler.

Tries: Morgan (27, 55), Cunnigham (39), Pitts (69)

Goals: Dixon (3 from 4)

Drop goal: Smith

St Helens: Welsby; Swift, Naiqama, Percival, Grace, Richardson, Fages; Lees, Roby, Thompson, Paulo, Peyroux, Knowles.

Interchanges: LMS, Amor, Ashworth, Costello.

Tries: Roby (5), Thompson (9), Percival (50), Grace (78)

Goals: Richardson (3 from 4)

HT: 12-12

FT: 23-22 – after Golden Point

ATT: TBC

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