Wolfpack too strong for Knights in Canada: Saturday 10th August - Betfred Championship

Published: 12 August, 2019 - 5:08 pm

By Jacob Kilbride, for York Press

York City Knights suffered their heaviest defeat since 2016 as they were beaten 56-6 away to League Leaders’ Shield winners Toronto Wolfpack.

A number of players were unavailable for York and it showed in a clinical display by Toronto who racked up ten tries in total.

The result means that York drop to fourth in the Betfred Championship table after 24 rounds, though one more league point will seal a maiden play-off spot for the Knights.

Just five minutes had gone when Gareth O’Brien – returning to the line-up after starting on the bench last week at Bradford – crossed down the left side for Toronto. By the midway point of the half, O’Brien had his second after finishing a slick passing move before dotting down. He added the extras from in front of the posts, the first of six conversions. Three minutes later, the former Salford full-back completed his hat-trick after dummying his way through the line.

The Toronto barrage of tries continued with another couple of tries in the space of three minutes. Hakim Miloudi got the first of those as the winger raced to the right corner before applying the acrobatic finish. Then, half-back Josh McCrone marked his return to the Wolfpack line-up by sliding underneath the posts to ground while unopposed.

York looked as if they were going to prevent another score before the half-time break but back rower Andrew Dixon denied that by taking an inside pass and scoring from ten metres out. That gave Toronto a 32-0 lead at half-time.

The Wolfpack picked up from where they left off immediately after the restart, scoring within the first couple of minutes of the second period. Andy Ackers was the scores throwing a terrific dummy out of acting half which the York bought, allowing him to cross the whitewash. The hooker turned provider moments later and his pass sent McCrone in for another easy score underneath the posts.

After 51 minutes and at 42-0 down, York did salvage some pride by putting themselves on the scoreboard. Mike Kelly got the try with Connor Robinson adding the goal.

Normal service resumed three minutes later as the ex-York loanee Nick Rawsthorne bagged a try against his old club by surging over by the right flag. Former Warrington wide-man Matty Russell did likewise, grounding in the corner just past the hour mark. In the penultimate minute, Toronto managed to take their lead to 50 points when Ackers claimed his double. Once again it came from a dummy half run and he reached out an arm to score past a visibly tiring Knights defence.

The Knights now turn their attentions to what is potentially the most important game of the season when Featherstone Rovers visit Bootham Crescent this Sunday, 18th August (3pm). Victory would see the Knights confirm their place in the Betfred Championship play-offs for the first ever time, and you can buy your ticket online now HERE.

Toronto: O’Brien, Rawsthorne, Miloudi, Leutele, Russell; Mellor, McCrone; Lussick, Ackers, Sims; Dixon, Olbison, Wilkin. Subs (all used): Beswick, Springer, Stanley, Wallace

Tries: O’Brien (5, 19, 22), Miloudi (24), McCrone (27, 44), Dixon (38), Ackers (41, 79), Rawsthorne (54), Russell (61)

Goals: O’Brien (6/10), Wallace (1/1)

York: Marsh, Oakes, C Scott, Hey, Bass; Harris, Robinson; Blagbrough, Jubb, Teanby; Salter, Jordan-Roberts, Spears. Subs (all used): Chilton, Kelly, Blagbrough, King.

Tries: Kelly (51)

Goals: Robinson (1/1)

Attendance: 8,102

Isaac Poad Man of the Match: Mike Kelly