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Tuesday, 02 September 2014

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Haven made to pay

HAVEN were made to pay for a slow start against the old enemy on Tuesday night.

The hosts were 16-0 down after just 14 minutes, and despite an impressive rally later in the game, they were unable to peg back the deficit against a useful Town side.

Outscoring the visitors by four tries to three, Haven’s indiscipline proved expensive, numerous ruck offences leading to a stack of penalties.

Town kicker Scott Kaighan had a field day, booting the six penalty goals that ultimately proved the difference between the teams.

Recent recruit Paul Cullnean and old hand Carl Sice were outstanding for Haven while Aussie newcomer Luke Isakka showed a glimpse of his obvious talent off the bench.

Prop Kris Coward was first in to the attack for Town, when held up over the Haven try-line. And moments later, the excellent Jarrad Stack burst through on a determined run from a tap penalty to score.

Six minutes later they doubled their lead, Ruari McGoff latching on to a delicate chip from Kaighan, who added the extras.

Haven lost possession in a promising position when Howard Hill was penalised for his high knee action in possession.

Two more penalties in quick succession and Stack went in for his second try. With scrum-half Kaighan pulling the strings from behind his big pack, Town were in charge.

Refs have been told to clean up the ruck area, so there could be little argument over some of the penalties conceded by the hosts.

Though James Child incu-rred the anger of Haven fans when he then sin-binned Hill for his knee action.

Hill’s running style was no different than it has been throughout his career, so it was strange to see it sudd-enly considered out of bounds, and Haven’s vice-captain, among the fairest of players, was clearly stunned by the decision as he left the field.

The hosts finally started to get to grips with the match in its second quarter, after Isakka joined the fray.

His quick play-the-ball after his first charge gave Haven impetus and Lewis Palfrey went on to cross out wide.

Scott McAvoy reduced the deficit further seven minutes later, beating his mar-ker from a scrum and touching down in the corner.

Haven were now in top gear, with Sice proving hard to hold. Great interplay bet-ween Palfrey, Derry Eilbeck and Craig Benson saw Sice kick to the corner for Jay Rossi, only for the sharp Town defence to arrive mar-ginally ahead of the winger.

In the closing seconds of the half, Sice prompted another break, Workington again scrambling well to deny Haven.

Town started the second-half on the front foot with Haven again conceding penalties and Kaighan again punishing them with a couple more goals, pushing the score out to 22-8.

Haven continued to press, and Neil Frazer had to be alive to Sice’s chip to the corner to deny the flying Craig Calvert, forcing the ball over the sideline.

The hosts reduced the deficit from the next set, Cullnean scooping up a loose ball and breaking a couple of tackles on the way to the try-line. Palfrey’s conversion pulled Haven back to within eight points of their rivals with 30 minutes still on the clock.

But another two penalty goals from Kaighan ensured Town maintained the advantage. And when Sice was sin-binned for preventing a quick re-start, prompting another Kaighan goal, Haven’s chance was gone.

A last minute Derry Eilbeck try, off Tane Manihera’s disguised short pass, was a consolation for Haven.

A home defeat against their traditional rivals is never easy to swallow for fans, but they won’t be the only team turned over by Town on their own turf this term.

Match facts

Haven: Benson, Rossi, Eilbeck, McAvoy, Calvert, Palfrey, Manihera, Cullnean, C Smith, Hill, S Miller, D Miller, Beattie. Subs: Sice, Isakka, R Fox, Barker.

Tries: Palfrey, McAvoy, Cullnean, Eilbeck.

Goals: Palfrey 1.

Town: Carter, Miller, Mossop, Low, Frazer, Bainbridge, Kaighan, McGoff, Mattinson, Coward, Whitehead, Stack, Olstrum. Subs: Pedley, Jackson, MacDonald, Shackley.

Tries: Stack 2, McGoff.

Goals: Kaighan 8.

Half-time: 8-18.

Sin-bin: Hill and Sice.

Referee: James Child.

Attendance: 1,005.

Haven Star Man: Paul Cullnean.

Town Star Man: Scott Kaighan.

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