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The Women’s Challenge Cup Final, the first game of a superb Elland Road triple header, saw the top two female sides in the country up against one another as St Helens faced the Leeds Rhinos for the first silverware of the season.

The game was played out in front of the BBC TV cameras and shown live to the nation on BBC2 and what a great advert for the game, and specifically the women´s game it was.

Saints knocked the Rhinos out at the semi-final stage last season before going on to beat York in the final and the Rhinos were runners up to Saints in the Women´s Super League last season. It really was a match between the two best and most successful sides in the Women´s game.

Leeds had the first possession but on three minutes a high kick was fumbled by Fran Goldthorp giving Saints a set on the Rhino line. Two plays in and Saints threw the ball into touch, both sides showing some early game nerves on the big occasion.

A tremendous thirty metre run from loose forward Zoe Hornby on fourteen saw her carry Jodie Cunningham over the line to force the ball onto the ground for the opening try of the game to give the Rhinos the lead, the first try Saints had conceded in this season’s competition. Courtney Winfield-Hill added the conversion for a 6-0 Rhinos lead.

The Rhinos had the upper hand and were defending solidly, diffusing every Saints attack.

Somehow, Beth Stott stopped Georgia Roche from grounding under the sticks off a Winfield-Hill high kick on twenty-tree to save a certain Leeds try.

Six minutes from the interval and Saints were right back in the game, a little against the run of play, when Leah Burke found herself in plenty of space to take a Zoe Harris high kick to the corner and ground in the right corner. Beth Stott was unable to convert from the touchline.

With just seconds of the first half remaining, Winfield-Hill kicked a thirty-five-minute penalty goal to double the half-time lead to 8-4 after a highly competitive first half.

An awful mix up in the Rhinos defence on forty-eight gifted Saints their second try as two Leeds defenders failed to deal with a kick through allowing Eboni Partington to pick up the ball and dot it down over the line. Stott was again unable to add the extras, the two sides tied up at 8-8 with half an hour remaining.

A poor penalty miss from Winfield-Hill on sixty-three spurned the chance of the lead for the Rhinos and as Saints returned the ball Jodie Cunningham crashed the Rhinos line to give Saints the lead as you visibly saw the Rhinos players heads drop to their chests. Stott added the goal, her first of the game, for a 14-8 lead.

With three minutes remaining Saints sealed the win to retain the trophy as Partington went over for her second of the game taking an Amy Hardcastle pass before juggling the ball and grounding in the left-hand corner. Stott missed her fourth kick of the afternoon, but it mattered nought as Saints lifted the trophy after an arm-wrestle of a game.

Saints did what Saints do, the absorbed the Rhinos pressure and as their opponents tired they hit them with a couple of quick and well worked tries to steal a game where they had looked second best for long periods. Leeds can hold their heads up high as they played their part in a  great game to entertain a good crowd in the stadium and an even larger audience on the TV.

St Helens: Rotherham, Partington (2T), Hardcastle, Roberts, Burke (T), Stott (G), Harris, Rudge I, Jones, Crowl, Travis, Williams, Cunningham (T). Subs: Whitefield, Rudge E, Sandham, Woosey.

Leeds Rhinos: Goldthorp, Gaines, Butcher, Beevers, Hulme, Roche, Winfield-Hill (2G), Anderson, Bennett, Staveley, Kerrigan, Watson, Hornby (T). Subs: Lumley, Lacey, McCallion, Barnes.

Half-Time: 4-8.

Full-Time: 18-8.

Score Progression: 0-4, 0-6, 4-6, 4-8: HT : 8-8, 12-8, 14-8, 18-8 : FT.

Crowd: 5,888.

Venue: Elland Road, Leeds.

Referee:  Liam Rush.




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Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 7th May 2022 1:41 PM | Views : 9231 | Replies : 2 | BACK TO STORIES
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TABLES:
Matches on TV
Fri 1st Jul
SL RND: 17
20:00
Castleford-Huddersfield
Sat 2nd Jul
L1 RND: 13
13:00
Cornwall-Hunslet
SL RND: 17
18:00
Catalans-St.Helens
Fri 8th Jul
CH RND: 18
19:45
Newcastle-Bradford
Sat 9th Jul
L1 RND: 14
13:00
Cornwall-Doncaster
SL RND: 18
19:00
Leeds-Castleford
SL RND: 18
16:45
St.Helens-Wigan
SLRND: 18
14:30
Wakefield-Toulouse
Sun 10th Jul
SL RND: 18
15:15
Catalans-Warrington
SL RND: 18
13:00
Huddersfield-Salford
SL RND: 18
17:30
Hull KR-Hull FC
Mon 11th Jul
CH RND: 18
19:45
Halifax-York
Sun 17th Jul
L1 RND: 15
13:00
Keighley-Cornwall
Mon 18th Jul
CH RND: 19
19:45
York-Batley
Thu 21st Jul
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20:00
Leeds-Wigan
Sun 24th Jul
CH RND: 20
15:00
Whitehaven-Leigh
Sat 30th Jul
CH RND: 21
12:45
LondonB-Sheffield
CH RND: 21
15:00
Batley-Dewsbury
CH RND: 21
17:15
Bradford-Halifax
CH RND: 21
19:30
Featherstone-Leigh
Mon 27th Jun
CH RND: 16 Barrow18-43Halifax
Sun 26th Jun
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CH RND: 16 Featherstone20-28Batley
CH RND: 16 Newcastle66-22Workington
CH RND: 16 Whitehaven16-40York
CH RND: 16 Widnes26-22LondonB
SOO RND: 2 New South Wales44-12Queensland
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L1 RND: 12 Keighley62-0Oldham
SL RND: 16 Castleford17-16Catalans
SL RND: 16 Hull KR10-38Huddersfield
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L1 RND: 12 LondonS4-24Swinton
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MINT2022 RND: 1 NZ26-6Tonga
MINT2022 RND: 1 SAM42-12Cook I
MINT2022 RND: 1 PNG24-14Fiji
Fri 24th Jun
CH RND: 16 Sheffield4-58Leigh
SL RND: 16 Warrington4-0Hull FC
This is an inplay table and positions can change as matches are in play.
Betfred Championship 2022 ROUND : 17
 PLDFADIFFPTS
Leigh 16 638 136 502 30
Featherstone 16 624 228 396 27
York 16 426 284 142 26
Batley 15 432 249 183 23
Halifax 16 471 266 205 22
Barrow 16 383 349 34 19
 
Bradford 16 373 335 38 18
Sheffield 15 339 368 -29 14
Widnes 16 337 437 -100 12
Newcastle 16 354 455 -101 12
Whitehaven 16 242 550 -308 8
LondonB 16 252 450 -198 5
Dewsbury 16 211 552 -341 4
Workington 16 188 611 -423 2
This is an inplay table and positions can change as matches are in play.
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Keighley 11 493 90 403 22
Swinton 11 420 157 263 18
Crusaders 11 387 218 169 16
Rochdale 11 422 258 164 16
Doncaster 11 326 266 60 14
Hunslet 11 286 258 28 11
 
Oldham 11 312 276 36 7
Midlands 10 278 339 -61 6
LondonS 11 196 450 -254 6
Cornwall 11 186 500 -314 2
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St.Helens 16 404 170 234 28
Wigan 16 434 301 133 24
Huddersfield 16 379 266 113 23
Catalans 16 356 219 137 22
Hull FC 16 310 289 21 16
Castleford 16 334 350 -16 16
 
Hull KR 16 281 336 -55 14
Salford 16 365 395 -30 12
Warrington 16 300 380 -80 12
Leeds 16 261 322 -61 11
Wakefield 16 257 440 -183 10
Toulouse 16 236 449 -213 4
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Melbourne 14 494 224 270 24
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Sydney 15 319 290 29 14
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