Saints’ Reserve side were beaten 32-24 by Championship outfit Swinton Lions at a cold Ruskin Drive in their 2023 opener

Swinton took an early third minute lead. A penalty on halfway allowed the visitors to push downfield and a few tackles later Gavin Rodden forced his way over from close range. Nick Gregson added the two, 0-6 Saints trailed.

The hosts responded well to the early try and grabbed one of their own in the 16th minute. A high kick was fumbled by the Lions after great pressure from Jumah Sambou, Will Roberts picked up the loose ball before racing away to score in the right corner. The half converted his own try, 6-6 the scores were tied.

The visitors regained the lead in the 23rd minute. The ball was camped on the Red Vee’s line and Kenny Baker forced his way over from close range. Gregson converted, 6-12. That lead was further increased two minutes later. A big break downfield saw a great tackle from Daniel Moss to hold Swinton up close to the line. Off the back of it the ball found Rodden who went over for his second try of the half. Joseph Romeo missed the two, 6-16.

Saints grabbed another try just before the break. A kick from Moss was collected by Roberts who went over for his second try under the sticks. Once again he converted his try with almost the final kick of the first half, 12-16 the Red Vee trailed at the break.

The visitors had another try early in the second half. The ball was moved from right to left and Calum Hughes scored in the corner. Romeo was unable to convert, 12-20. Romeo could not convert, 12-20. That lead as quickly extended as Scott Parnaby burrowed over from close range. Dan Abram converted, 12-26.

Saints grabbed their third try towards the end of the second half. A break down the middle of the pitch saw Nathan Bannerman find Ciaran Nolan, who strolled over underneath the sticks. Moss converted, 18-26. Another try quickly followed. A pass in midfield was intercepted by Wes Bruines who went half the length of the field to score under the sticks. Moss converted again, 24-26 we trailed.

A knock on a few tackles into the restart ruined the Red Vee’s momentum. Swinton drove downfield and Baker threw a dummy before scoring under the sticks. Abram converted with the final kick of the game to seal a 24-32 victory for the Lions against a spirited Saints Reserve side.


Saints Reserves Team: Harvey Braddish, Keane Gilford, Wes Bruines, Dayon Sambou, Alfie Whittle, Daniel Moss, Will Roberts, Lewis Baxter, Jake Burns, George Delaney, McKenzie Buckley, Alfie Pyke, Kalan Devine.

Interchanges: Ciaran Nolan, Nathan Bannerman, Leunbou Bardyel Wells, Leon Cowen, Brett Bailey, Logan Milne, Kelvin Taylor.

Tries: Will Roberts (16, 38), Ciaran Nolan (70), Wes Bruines (73)

Conversions: Will Roberts (2 from 2), Daniel Moss (2 from 2)

Swinton Lions Team: Joseph Romeo, Myles Harrop, Andrew Badrock, Jake Spedding, Jayden Hatton, Nick Gregson, Jordan Gibson, Kenny Baker, Josh Eaves, Jordan Case, Rhordi Lloyd, Gavin Rodden, Liam Cooper.

Interchanges: Dan Abram, Mike Butt, Calum Hughes, Anthony Dyne, Ollie Olds, Joe Lowe, Morgan Burgess, Luke Waterworth, Gavin Bennion, Mitch Cox, Louis Brogan, Scott Parnaby.

Tries: Gavin Rodden (3, 24), Kenny Baker (23, 80), Calum Hughes (42), Scott Parnaby (47)

Conversions: Nick Gregson (2 from 2), Joseph Romeo (0 from 2), Dan Abram (2 from 2)

HT: 12-16

FT: 24-32


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