The initial exchanges saw the visitors lay siege to the Hull 20-metre zone and with a little more steadiness the blue and white stripes would have been on the scoreboard in the early stages, writes Jonathan Buck.
It was not until the 20th minute that the Myton line was breached. Harley Axe, who caught the eye in all aspects of play, dummied his way over in the fine tradition of all acting half-backs and Lions were 6-0 to the good with Liam Kay’s conversion.
Lions continued first half territorial ascendancy possibly brought a touch of over-confidence and Myton caught their defence cold with two ‘last and dash’ plays out of their own half. The two long range tries from the home side indicative of a team with a dangerous attacking potential that should not be languishing in the bottom half of the table.
As half-time approached Featherstone could have been looking down the barrel of an 18-6 reversal if a third excellent Warriors’ break had also crossed the whitewash. Thanks to some scrambling defence the Myton length-of-the-field move was halted in the corner and from covering winger Ryan Martin’s speedy restart at the turnover a space was created for teenage speedster Prashant Veerasamy. The try of the game followed as the young flier sped the length of the field, leaving the home defenders in his wake to score in the corner.
From what could have been a very tough turnaround at 18-6 down and totally against the run of play, Lions should have been going into the sheds at the break only 12-10 to the worse, but that slipped to 14-10 as from the immediate restart from the try a mis-communication resulted in the kick-off going dead and the Lions’ goal-line drop-out finding touch on the full. A penalty in front of the posts for the home side and a rare mistake by Featherstone’s kicking specialists.
The second half started better for Featherstone, the relentless hit-ups and error-free first-up tackles were depleting the home side’s resolve. The strong running centre duo of Davi Garahan and Sam Wilkinson-Pycock made sturdy support to the hard-working pack in which Chris Bingham was once again a ubiquitous presence in defence and attack, alongside the returning Jack Beddis, both constant threats to the Myton side.
It took Lions’ longstanding clubman Jake Perkins to edge the Lions back in front. His ‘show and go’ act left the Hull tacklers treading through treacle as he flew by the leaden-footed cover to score in the corner and level the scores at 14 apiece. Kay made no mistake with the conversion to put Lions back in front 16-14.
What could and should have been a straightforward close out to the game in the final quarter did not play out that way. Myton counter-attacked strongly and Lions defended manfully, with much of the visitors’ under-pressure defence coming from their own errors and one or two quizzical decisions from the official.
The Lions had a great chance to seal the game in the final few minutes when a classy move finished with a cut-out ball that just sailed out of the reaches of Elliott Bell on the right wing.
But the extra try was not needed, the referee’s final whistle soon followed. Featherstone’s improved second half performance meant the Hull side had failed to trouble the scoreboard after the break and Lions deservedly merited the narrow 16-14 win that sees their rebuilding season take further steps in the right direction.
Here's a look at some action shots from the game: