Below par Saints battle to victory over Centurions

Saints weren’t at their best, but ground out a fifth Betfred Super League win out of five after a 22-12 victory over a dogged Leigh Centurions at Leigh Sports Village in a game which saw James Bentley stretchered off late with a nasty looking leg injury.

Jake Wingfield started at loose forward, whilst Kevin Naiqama again took his place on the wing with Tommy Makinson missing with his foot injury.

It was an even start and it took until the 20 minute mark for Saints to break the deadlock. Sione Mata’utia grabbed his first try of the season after another assist by Jonny Lomax. Lachlan Coote converted to make it 6-0.

The game continued to hot up as did the penalty count as both sides struggled for a real foot hold. Regan Grace thought he was through after another Lomax ball out wide, but some good Leigh scrambling on the line denied him.

The Leythers thought they had got back into it on the half hour mark after a good offload, but the referee ruled it out after a forward pass, before Grace flew down the line on the return, but failed to find Coote with his pass and it stayed at 6-0.

Saints were rather in-disciplined, giving away a number of penalties and Theo Fages was sin binned as a result. The Centurions capitalised instantly with a quick move out left and Matty Russell dived in at the corner. Ben Reynolds levelled things up from the touchline and it was 6-6 at the break.

Saints came out for the second half with a point to prove and Lomax broke through the defensive line, before passing to the supporting Coote who went over for his first try of the season. He added the extras to his own try to make it 12-6 after 43 minutes.

Jack Welsby made it back to back tries for Saints despite being a man down, as the impressive Mata’utia found the youngster who dummied before going over. Coote made it three from three, making it 18-6 after 46 minutes.

Saints looked to be through on the left minutes later, but Anthony Gelling intercepted a Coote ball and went the length of the pitch to get one back for Centurions. Reynolds added the extras, to make it 18-12.

Kevin Naiqama then grabbed his fourth try of the season 10 minutes later after a brilliant ball out wide by Coote which took two defenders out the of fray leaving the Fijian free to touch down unchallenged in the corner. Coote missed the two from out wide, leaving the score at 22-12 with 20 minutes to play.

Kristian Woolf’s men continued to crank up the pressure as Leigh gave away another penalty which Coote chose to kick, but he fired wide of the sticks when bang in front.

There was a sour end to the game as Bentley was stretchered off after an awkward fall, but Saints came away with the two points.

Match Summary:

Leigh 13: Ryan Brierley, Junior Sa’u, Anthony Gelling, Iain Thornley, Matty Russell, Ben Reynolds, Matty Wildie, Ben Flower, Nathan Peats, Nathan Mason, Ben Hellewell, Jordan Thompson, Tyrone McCarthy.

Interchanges: Liam Hood, James Bell, Nathaniel Peteru, Alex Gerrard.

Tries: Russell (36), Gelling (48)

Conversions: Reynolds (2 of 2)

Saints 13: Lachlan Coote, Kevin Naiqama, Jack Welsby, Mark Percival, Regan Grace, Jonny Lomax, Theo Fages, Alex Walmsley, James Roby, Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Sione Mata’utia, James Bentley, Jake Wingfield.

Interchanges: Kyle Amor, Agnatius Paasi, Joe Batchelor, Lewis Dodd.

Tries: Mata’utia (20), Coote (42), Welsby (45), Naiqama (59)

Conversions: Coote (3 of 4)

Half time: 6-6

Full time: 12-22

Referee: Marcus Griffiths

Leigh Centurions Line up

1Ryan Brierley
2Junior Sa’u
3Anthony Gelling
4Iain Thornley
5Matty Russell
6Ben Reynolds
7Matty Wildie
8Ben Flower
9Nathan Peats
10Nathan Mason
11Ben Hellewell
12Jordan Thompson
13Tyrone McCarthy
14Liam Hood
15James Bell
16Nathaniel Peteru
17Alex Gerrard

Last updated 17 Jul 21 18:37:36

Thank you for joining us. We will see you next Friday as we face Huddersfield in a huge Challenge Cup Quarter Final clash!

Head over to our homepage and Saints TV for all the post match reaction including an update on James Bentley who was stretchered off late on. We will also have highlights and full match replay on Saints TV tomorrow!

With no social media vote tonight, we have opted for Sione Mata’utia as our stand out man!

FT: 🔴⚪ LEIGH 12-22 SAINTS 🔵⚪

Saints come out on top after tries from Mata’utia, Coote, Welsby and Naiqama!

77'

Best wishes to Bentos who leaves the field on a stretcher to applause from staff, players and Directors.

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77'

Bentley is still down here. It looks like he has landed awkwardly in the tackle with his lower leg or ankle the problem. I’m sure Kristian Woolf will shed some light in his post match press conference.

77'

Bentley is down on the far side. It looks a nasty one.

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77'

But Leigh cough up the ball after a forward pass. Four minutes to go.

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76'

Fages puts a neat grubber in which is touched dead by a Leigh player and we force a goal-line drop out which Leigh win back through Gelling who out jumps Welsby.

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75'

Welsby wins a penalty and Coote kicks for touch. We have the ball on half way as Paasi and Wingfield are back on…

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📸 LIVE MATCH PICTURES

73'

Great defence from Saints forces Leigh winger into touch. Great scrambling, boys! Seven minutes to go…

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71'

Wingfield is on for Batchelor who has taken a knock. Leigh have it in the Saints half. Stay strong, boys!

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📸 LIVE MATCH PICTURES

67'

We try and run it on the last through the hands of Fages, but Lomax is trapped on the line. LMS is back on for Amor.

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66'

We win a penalty this time in front of the sticks, but Coote pushes it wide.

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64'

The referee has deemed that Percival knocks on in the tackle, although it didn’t seem that way from up in the press box – we don’t have an replays mind! Luckily, we have it straight back…

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62'

We come forward again down the right, but Batchelor can’t grasp the ball and Leigh survive this time.

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60'

Coooote misses the two as Big Al is back on for Iggy Paasi and young Lewis Dodd is on for captain Roby at hooker.

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59'
Try
Kevin Naiqama for Saints

We are in again as the ball finds its way out wide, via a touch by Bentley, to Naiqama who strides over!

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56'

Iggy thinks he’s powered his way over, but the referee says he is held up. We will come again…but Lomax knocks on this time.

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54'

Brilliant defence from Saints keeps the Leythers at bay and force the knock on the last! Let’s get up the other end now boys! That will help – a penalty to Saints.

🔴⚪ LEIGH 12-18 SAINTS 🔵⚪

📸 LIVE MATCH PICTURES

52'

Leigh on the attack. The ball comes loose, Roby tries to pick it up, but knocks on and Leigh have another set, this time on the Saints line. Time to defend, boys!

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51'

Amor is penalised for a high shot. Leigh kick for touch and have a set in the Saints half.

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50'
Goal
Ben Reynolds for Leigh Centurions

Reynolds converts.

🔴⚪ LEIGH 12-18 SAINTS 🔵⚪

49'
Try
Anthony Gelling for Leigh Centurions

Saints are on the attack, but Coote’s offload is intercepted by Anthony Gelling who runs the length of the field to score.

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48'

Saints are back up to our full compliment as Fages is back from the bin…

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47'
Goal
Lachlan Coote for Saints

Coooote does the rest to extend our lead!

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46'
Try
Jack Welsby for Saints

Back to back tries for Saints! We move the ball to the left and Mata’utia feeds Welsby who goes over!

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44'
Goal
Lachlan Coote for Saints

Coooooote adds the two to his own try and we are back ahead!

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43'
Try
Lachlan Coote for Saints

BACK WITH A BANG! Amor wins a set restart and on the next play, Lomax breaks through and feeds the supporting COOOOOOTE for his first try of the season!

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The players are back out for the second half and we are back underway! Come on, boys! 🔵⚪

🔴⚪ LEIGH 6-6 SAINTS 🔵⚪

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HT: 🔴⚪ LEIGH 6-6 SAINTS 🔵⚪

Sione Mata’utia’s try was cancelled out by Matty Russell and we are all square at the break.

39'

We are approaching the half time hooter here in Leigh and fair play to the hosts, they are certainly up for it!

🔴⚪ LEIGH 6-6 SAINTS 🔵⚪

📸 Live match pictures

37'
Goal
Ben Reynolds for Leigh Centurions

Ben Reynolds adds the two from the touchline. Batchelor is on for Wingfield for Saints.

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36'
Try
Matty Russell for Leigh Centurions

Leigh make the numbers and their back-to-back sets count as Matty Russell goes over in the corner.

🔴⚪ LEIGH 4-6 SAINTS 🔵⚪

35'
Yellow Card
Theo Fages for Saints

Fages is sent to the bin after a persistent penalties were given away by Saints…We will play the rest of this half with 12 men.

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34'

Kyle Amor is also on as LMS, on his 300th Saints appearance, makes way…Leigh with back to back sets here…

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📸 Live match pictures

Yes Sione!

33'

Iggy Paasi is on as Big Al makes way for him! Can he inject some muscle down the middle and win this forward battle?

🔴⚪ LEIGH 0-6 SAINTS 🔵⚪

32'

At the right end, Grace bursts forward on one of his mesmorising runs, but he his halted before Lomax’s pass is intercepted and Leigh survive.

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31'

Leigh win a penalty in the Saints 20 and have a chance to reply. Peteru thinks he’s scored, but the referee calls a forward pass.

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28'

Leigh come forward, but knock on and we will have it back as the sun shines here at Leigh Sports Village!

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27'

We have another chance as Mata’utia bursts through and feeds Grace. He is held up just short before Coote’s kick runs dead. A chance gone there for Saints.

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📸 Live match pictures

21'
Goal
Lachlan Coote for Saints

Coooooote back on kicking duties this evening, converts the two from the far left!

🔴⚪ LEIGH 0-6 SAINTS 🔵⚪

21'
Try
Sione Mata'utia for Saints

Sioneeeeee! The first try of the game goes Saints way as Lomax feeds Mata’utia and he powers his way over for his first try in Saints colours!

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19'

Wingfield wins a penalty for a high shot and we now have a chance in the Leythers half…Come on boys!

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📸 Live match pictures

16'

Great defence from Saints sees Junior Sa’u trapped on the last and we come forward!

🔴⚪ LEIGH 0-0 SAINTS 🔵⚪

14'

Leigh win a penalty after Roby is deemed to have caught Brierley late. Time to defend, boys…

🔴⚪ LEIGH 0-0 SAINTS 🔵⚪

11'

The Leythers win a penalty as Saints are penalised for offside. They kick for touch and have a set of six in our half…

🔴⚪ LEIGH 0-0 SAINTS 🔵⚪

8'

Leigh have their first real attack, but a high kick is knocked on as Grace goes up for it and we come away with the ball…

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4'

Again the ball is moved out to the right with Coote and Lomax involved and again Percy knocks on. We are looking sharp in attack though…

🔴⚪ LEIGH 0-0 SAINTS 🔵⚪

3'

The ball is moved out to the right through the hands of Coote and Lomax to Naiqama, but on the next play, Percival knocks on and Leigh survive. The hosts then do likewise and we have it back!

🔴⚪ LEIGH 0-0 SAINTS 🔵⚪

2'

James Bentley wins an early penalty for Saints, Coote kicks for touch and we have our first chance of the game!

🔴⚪ LEIGH 0-0 SAINTS 🔵⚪

We are off and underway at Leigh Sports Village! Come on boys!

🔴⚪ LEIGH 0-0 SAINTS 🔵⚪

Big Al is ready! Kick off is next!

Joe Batchelor is back in the side tonight!

The boys are out for their pre-match warm ups! A reminder the game kicks off at 6pm on Our League for members…

He made his 400th career appearance a few weeks ago and today he makes his 300th Saints appearance! Well in, Louie!👏

Kick off is one hour away!

The lads are in the house!

This is how our hosts, Leigh will line up this evening…

The boss on his team: Makinson’s foot hasn’t recovered in time so we didn’t want to take any risks. He will be fit for next week. It’s also a great chance for Wingfield, who is a Leigh lad, to show what he can do.”

Kristian Woolf makes one change as Joe Batchelor comes in for the injured Joel Thompson! Tommy Makinson doesn’t make it so Kev Naiqama is again on the wing and there is a first start for Jake Wingfield at loose forward!

🔵⚪️ SAINTS TEAM 🔵⚪️

This is how we will line up today!

The walk the players will make…

The boys are in blue today and we will have team news with you at around 4:30pm….👀

Head over to our homepage to read all the pre-match chatter in our match preview story!

The pitch is looking in good condition, the weather is fair and we are looking forward to an action packed game!

Welcome to Leigh Sports Village as the Saints face Leigh Centurions with kick off at 6pm! The game is live on Our League for 2021 members but we will also have all the updates for you right here!

WE WILL HAVE ALL THE BUILD-UP, TEAM NEWS AND LIVE ACTION FOR YOU RIGHT HERE IN OUR MATCH CENTRE FROM 4PM. STAY TUNED!