Plans (2007) by architects Day Cummins for
two new stands for the Recreation Ground.
2007 was a season that started with a long run of unbeaten league and cup games, but ended with some awayday blues and yet again exit from the Cup semis. It also saw slow headway being made on dreams of Superleage promotion.
Players player of the year: Richard Fletcher
Directors Player of the year: Gary Broadbent
Junior Supporters player: Carl Rudd
Pro-Cam try of the season: Craig Calvert V Leigh
Most Improved Player: Derry Eilbeck
Young Player of the year: Marc Bainbridge
Supporters player of the year: Gary Broadbent
Support Group player of the year: Richard Fletcher
Away Supporters player of the year: Richard Fletcher
Internet Supporters player of the year: John Duffy
News and star readers player of the year: Craig Calvert
Players player of the year: David Ford
Coaches player of the year: Craig Benson
Directors player of the year: Chris Smith
Supporters player of the year: Marc BainbridgeFarewells 2007 season end....
David Seeds (Retired)
Aaron Lester (Retired)
Aaron Smith (Signed for Leigh)
Steve Maden (Signed for Leigh)
Steve Trindall (Released)
Simon Baldwin (Released)
Whitehaven RLFC have appointed Paul Crarey former coach of Barrow Raiders as their new coach. The 42 year old former Haven player last night signed a twelve month contract with the club.
On a very positive note pivotal Haven players Leroy Joe and David Fatialofa have stepped up to the plate again.
Halifax won 32- 24 in the Play-offs. Haven tries from Calvert (2), Rudd and David Fatialofa. Goals (4) from Rudd. For Halifax tries from Larder, Royston, Varkulis and Ball.
Shad Royston; Damian Gibson, Mark Roberts, Richard Varkulis, Lee Greenwood; Graham Holroyd, Ian Watson; Paul Southern, Sam Hoare, David Wrench, David Larder, Paul Smith, Phil Joseph
Subs: Sean Penkywicz, Damian Ball, Aaron Trinder, Frank Watene
Tries: Larder (29), Royston (32), Trinder (39), Varkulis (54), Ball (63)
Goals: Holroyd 6/7
Gary Broadbent; Craig Calvert, David Seeds, Rob Jackson, Steve Maden; Leroy Joe, Carl Rudd; Simon Baldwin, Graeme Mattinson, David Fatialofa, Spencer Miller, Richard Fletcher, Scott McAvoy
Subs: Carl Sice, Howard Hill, Marc Jackson, Ricky Wright
Tries: Calvert (35, 48), Rudd (42), Fatialofa (71)
Goals: Rudd 4/5
Penalty Count: 9-4
Referee: Phil Bentham
The BBC via commentator John Cox, post match and on Friday Sept 14 broke the news that Dave Rotheram is not to have his contract renewed.
The board are said to want a Fresh Aproach for Haven. The news was conveyed to Rotheram before the Leigh game. Chairman Des Byrne stated on radio that the Haven coaching job is to be advertised. DR said "We stuttered bit but won 75% of our games it's been a succesful year. Two fantastic years here."
Claims that Steve Maden will return to Leigh have been denied in some quarters.
Dreadful trip down M6..Sheffield 26 -Haven 14
Haven Should Have Taken the Pens!
Haven: Broadbent, Calvert, Seeds, R.Jackson, S.Maden, L.Joe,C.Rudd, S.Trindall,A.Smith, D,Fatialofa, S.Baldwin, Fletcher,S.McAvoy; C.Sice, Hill, M.Jackson, R. Wright.
Recall our game against the Tigers
August 9 (7.30pm)
Haven were the real tigers who pulled Castleford's tail. The visitors could never relax as the Haven defence were superb and their pressure for an upset was constant.
Richard Fletcher had the first try of the match as Haven really sparked things off in front of over 3,000 at the Recre and many more at home on Sky. Rudd converted. Broadbent, who had a superb game almost came through but let slip a knock on. Ryan Clayton then somehow found a way through the unrelenting Haven defences. Jackson should have scored but Danny Wilson ripped the ball out and the try was disallowed. Dixon and Baker then made sure Castleford went into the second half with a cushion.
Haven 24 (12-4) 14 Batley
But gradually, with the likes of David Fatialofa, Richard Fletcher and new signing Simon Baldwin running strongly Haven started to take control. They managed to get three consecutive sets, as first Marns and then Ash Lindsay were forced to knock tricky John Duffy kicks dead.
The pressure finally told when Carl Rudd stabbed a grubber kick through and David Seeds reacted quickest to open the scoring on 19 minute. Rudd converted the try.
Haven kept up the pressure and on 26 minutes doubled their lead. Baldwin made a half-break after a good pass from Rudd and turned in the tackle, releasing Carl Sice to score under the posts (19). Sice had replaced Greame Mattinson only a few seconds earlier, and the pass from Baldwin was the first time he touched the ball. Carl Rudd converted again. Determined not to concede a third try the Bulldogs threw everything they had into the next ten minutes.
Their cause was helped when Gary Broadbent was sin-binned for holding down right on the Haven line, but try as they might the visitors just could not force their way over during a long spell of pressure. Eventually the home side cleared their lines and it looked like the visitors' chance had gone. However they were awarded a dubious penalty on half way and took full advantage. Lee Paterson tapped it as the Haven players stood with their backs to him, and only a desperate tackle from Ricky Wright brought him to ground.
Wright was on hand to make another desperate tackle a few seconds later, but his defensive heroics were only delaying the inevitable and sure enough Luke Stenchion bulldozed his way over the line a few seconds later. Patterson missed with his conversion but the Bulldogs' tails were up going into half-time. The first 17 minutes of the second period passed without incident, as both sides became locked in an arm wrestle in the middle of the park.
Haven looked the stronger, but the usual attacking spark from Sice or Duffy was lacking.
As the game threatened to peter out Duffy finally injected some magic, selling a dummy and going on a mazy run through the Batley defenders, before touching down. As the home fans went wild, referee Mike Dawber pulled play back, seemingly for an obstruction when Duffy ran close to Baldwin.
That seemed to be the spark the game needed and suddenly the interest was ignited, with Batley grabbing another score of their own.
Richard Colley produced a great run, and slipped the ball out of a tackle to Jamie Stokes in support, he dived for the line, and Francis Maloney's conversion brought the visitors back to within a score at 12-10 on the hour.
Haven were reeling and when star centre David Seeds was flattened in a tackle it looked like the game might swing the way of the visitors. Seeds was helped to his feet, and as a substitute got set to replace him Haven switched their attack from left to right.
Seeds ignored the physio's call to leave the field, and how pleased Haven were just a few seconds later. The ball was moved back to the left by John Duffy and Seeds, still looking rather groggy, sold Marns a dummy and ghosted over for his second score. Rudd converted to put some daylight back on the score board, but with 15 minutes still to play the Bulldogs were very much still in the contest.
That was until Seeds worked his magic again.
This time he was still in his own half when he took Duffy's pass, but he ran at the Batley defence and with Ash Lindsay and Mark Barlow terrified of the pace of Calvert on Seeds' outside they moved across, anticipating the pass.
Seeds used all his experience, shaping to shift the ball and then running into the gaping chasm created when the two defenders rushed towards Calvert.
Three or four years ago Seeds would have gone on to out-stip the full back and claim a hat-trick, but with old father time catching up with him he was delighted to see Spencer Miller on his inside as Jamie Stokes closed him down. Seeds released the ball at just the right time and Miller went over under the sticks. Rudds fourth conversion made the margin 14, and Gary Thornton might have been forgiven for thinking the world was against him. He barked some instructions from the sidelines as he tried to rally his troops for one last effort, and it payed dividends.
Maloney's short kick off was recovered and they went on one last attack, which ended when Marns stepped inside Rob Jackson and grabbed what might prove a vital try in the Bulldogs battle to beat the drop. Maloney's conversion struck the bar but at 24-14 it was of little consequence.
David Seeds second try pushed Haven eight points clear, and ended any hope of a shock Batley win.
News Updates: July 2007 Skipper Aaron moves to Penrith RU
Halifax 20- Haven 26; on the scoresheet Dave Seeds, Hill, Calvert and Rudd
New signing ..Rochdale prop Simon Baldwin
See the proposed new stands for the Recre
July 22 ; Widnes 16 Haven 14
Tries marc Jackson and Derry Eilbeck, goals Rudd 3..Widnes tries from Moran, Blanch and that man Nanyn
Scorer for Haven Rudd.
Widnes: Koke-Love, Blanch (2), Nanyn, Doran, Moran, Smith, Gaskell. Goals Nanyn.
The scoreline was a fair reflection of a one-sided cup final.
Haven: Broadbent, Calvert, Eilbeck, R Jackson, Maden, Joe, Duffy, Fatialofa, Smith, Trindall, Miller, Fletcher, Rudd. Subs: Sice, Mattinson, R Jackson, Teare.
WHITEHAVEN cantered to a comfortable victory over Sheffield Eagles, running out 44-16 winners at The Recreation Ground. The home side completely dominated the game from start to finish, and had the final ball not been lacking on a number of occasions they could well have scored far more then the eight ties they managed.
Haven started brightly, with Rob Jackson sending Craig Calvert away on the left only for the flying winger's trailing leg to hit the sideline just as he was grounding the ball. The two almost combined again a few minutes later, but this time Jackson's pass went straight into touch. However it was third time lucky on seven minutes when Jackson latched onto a great pass from Greame Mattinson and then found Calvert cutting back on the inside. There was no stopping Calvert this time as he opened the scoring. Carl Rudd missed the conversion.
The Eagles hadn't had so much as one attack and when they did manage one, on ten minutes, a loose pass was superbly intercepted by Steve Trindall to set up another Haven attack, from which they grabbed their second score.
Sheffield had defended well and the home side were only just up to half way on the last. Rudd launched a huge bomb which should have been bred and butter for Johnny Woodcock, but the Eagles full back and his winger, Danny Mills, left it to each other. The ball bounced up on the hard surface and as the pair of them struggled with the sun in their eyes Aaron Smith pounced. With the visitors' defence floundering Smith fed Spencer Miller, who went over. Rudd again missed with the conversion. Whitehaven were in total control of the game as Sheffield struggled for both field position on possession. If they were going to get back into the match it was going to take a mistake, a piece of individual skill or lucky interception.
Richard Fletcher broke a tackle for Haven and charged over half-way. The defence only just scambled to ground him and as they struggled get set for the next phase Haven could smell blood. However in their desperation to kill off the Eagles a pass was forced and Gary Broadbent knocked it on. Damien Reid seized the chance, gathering the ball and racing 60 metres to score under the posts. Woodcock's conversion meant that for all Haven's dominance the score was just 8-6 after 20 minutes.
Haven came back strongly, first Aaron Smith was held up over the line (22) then Derry Eilbeck had a try chalked off for a dubious knock on (25) and finally, in the next set, Richard Fletcher was called back for a forward pass just as he looked set to ground the ball. However the pressure was beginning to tell as Sheffield defended in the heat, and with Marc Jackson and Carl Sice on and causing problems with some fantastic off-loads it was just a matter of time before Haven scored again. It came on 27 minutes after another great pass from Mattinson. This time Broadbent was the recipient and he span out of the tackle and touched down. Rudd landed the extras this time from right out on the touch-line.
Sice was causing all kinds of problems for the Eagles and after yet another break from him Mattinson got in on the scoring act (35) and Rudd converted to make it 20-6.
That should have been game over but just before the break Adam Haynes latched onto a flat pass close to the Haven line and scored a try that kept the Eagles in the game. Woodcock converted and they went into the interval only eight points behind. Sheffield made the brighter start in the second half and actually had Haven on the back foot for a short while, a try then might have given them the belief they needed to get something from the encounter. But a lovely delayed pass from Sice to Rob Jackson split their defence on 45 minutes. Jackson shipped the ball onto Calvert and, as is inevitable when Calvert gets clear space to run at, the winger scored a great try. Rudd again converted. Sheffield needed to score next to have any chance and as Haven pilled forward they did well to keep them out. When the Eagles did get the ball they needed to drive up field and then give themselves a chance to build some momentum with the kick, but that wasn't to be. A thunderous hit from Haven sub Scott Teare forced Jack Howieson to spill the ball on the first tackle, and set Haven up for yet another attack.
Again Carl Sice came up with something special, this time his inside ball sending Marc Jackson over the whitewash for a try which Rudd converted. That was game over.
Paul Pickering let his frustration show when he went in with a late elbow on Leroy Joe as the Kiwi half-back kicked the ball and referee Robert Hicks sent him to the sin-bin. Having made a couple of tries Sice decided to score one himself. He put Fletcher through a gap and the backed up to receive the ball back from the second row as Woodcock came across to tackle him. Sice collected Fletcher's pass and dived over the line to score Haven's seventh of the afternoon (56) and Rudd again converted.
The game seemed to fizzle out after that, with Haven no doubt having one eye on this weekend's Northern Rail Cup Final against Widnes at Blackpool. Grant Edwards pulled back an unconverted try for Sheffield (64), but Haven were to have the last word. The game had been dubbed "Kiwi day" by Haven to mark the contribution Fatialofa, Joe and the now departed Aaron Lester have made to the club over the past ten years as they enjoy the business end of their testimonial season. It was fitting that Fatialofa should grab the games final try in the final minute. Rudd tacked on the two.
GAMESTAR: Carl Sice; An outstanding contribution again from Sice who scored one and made two others playing behind a dominant pack. Mattinson and Fletcher were also in good from and all four of Haven's props made a bigs impacts.
1 Gary Broadbent
2 Craig Calvert
3 Rob Jackson
4 Derry Eilbeck
5 Steve Maden
6 Carl Rudd
7 Leroy Joe
8 Steve Trindall
9 Aaron Smith
10 David Fatialofa
11 Spencer Miller
12 Richard Fletcher
13 Greame Mattinson
14 Carl Sice
15 David Seeds
16 Marc Jackson
17 Scott Teare
1 Johnny Woodcock;
2 Danny Mills,
3 James Ford,
4 Damien Reid,
5 Rob Worrincy;
6 Brendon Lindsay,
7 Gavin Brown;
8 Jack Howieson,
9 Paul Pickering,
10 Mitchell Stringer,
11 Dale Holdstock,
12 Tommy Trayler,
13 Adam Hayes.
14 Dom Brambani,
15 Ryan Hipworth,
16 Grant Edwards,
17 Tom Buckenham.
Calvert (7, 45) Miller (11) Broadbent (27) Mattinson (35) Marc Jackson (50) Sice (56) Fatialofa (79)
Reid (18) Hayes (40) Edwards (64)
Pickering (53) late tackle.
Penalty Count 7-7
Scoring sequence. 4-0, 8-0, 8-6, 14-6, 20-6, 20-12, 26-12, 32-12, 38-12, 38-16, 44-16.
Half time; 20-12.
WHITEHAVEN produced the best 40 minute performance seen in many a long year at The Recreation Ground to come from the dead and claim a spot in the final of the Northern Rail Cup.
Trailing Halifax 19-6 at the interval the hosts looked dead and buried but roared back with 28 unanswered second half points to set up a clash with Widnes at Blackpool.
It was the visitors who made the better start, with props Paul Southern and Frank Watene making good yards and Ian Watson directing play. Graham Holroyd missed a simple penalty on eight minutes that would have given them the lead that they had deserved.
On 11 minutes Phil Joseph opted for the power-play on the last, a ploy that nearly paid off but he was held up inches short of the line as the visitors continued to dominate.
WHITEHAVEN's first attack came on 13 minutes and almost ended in disaster when John Duffy's long looping pass was plucked from the air by Holroyd. The 'Fax stand-off still had 65 metres to go to the line and was chased down by second row Richard Fletcher. Fletcher did brilliantly to save a certain try.
He chased Holroyd towards the corner and as the Fax man anticipated Fletcher's tackle he tried to pass inside to the Mark Roberts.
But Fletcher has read that too, and got his hand in the way of the pass -- knocking the ball dead and keeping the scores level.
Halifax did eventually break the deadlock two minutes later though when Steve Trindal was harshly pulled up for a high shot on Watene, and Holroyd this time knocked over the penalty.
Then came an onslaught that even the most optimistic of Haven fans must have thought would see them beaten.
First on 17 minutes Richard Varkulis sold a dummy in his own hauled and raced 60 metres to score. Holroyd missed the conversion.
And then on 22 minutes Holroyd shipped the ball wide to Roberts who drew the last defender and sent Lee Greenwood in for the simplest of score. This time Holroyd added the conversion from the touchline.
The on 28 minutes Varkulis again caused problems, breaking and finding Damian Gibson with an inside ball.
Gibson broke clear and passed to Joseph on the charge. The loose forward then got the ball away to Paul Smith who scored the try. Holroyd added the extras, and a chorus of boos sounded around The Recreation Ground. Most worrying for Haven was not the fact that they were 18-0 down, but the ease with which Halifax seemed to be able to cut through their defence, while none of their own attacks had looked like coming to anything.
If Halifax had scored the next try then that would have been it -- but another piece of genius from Fletcher got the hosts back in it. He took the ball from Duffy after a good charge by Marc Jackson and attracted three defenders and he powered towards the line.
Fletcher -- who is Haven's stand out forward week in and week out -- then slipped a sublime off-load to the on-rushing Leroy Joe who danced round Shad Royston and scored. Carl Rudd turned four into six with the conversion. There was time just before the hooter sounded for Ian Watson to add a drop-goal and further extend the visitors lead.
If Haven were to have any chance of avoiding a semi final exit for the fourth time in five seasons then they simply had to score next -- and sure enough Carl Sice came up with the goods on 50 minutes. Sice's lively play around the ruck had been one of the few threats Haven posed in the first period, but it was as a support player to the other Carl -- Rudd -- that he got his try. Rudd sold a dummy on half-way and raced away, but wasn't going to have the legs to get to the try-line. He slipped a lovely ball inside to Sice and he sprinted clear of the last defender. Richard Fletcher added the extras and suddenly it was game on.
Duffy began to dominate the game the way that his opposite number Ian Watson had in the first half, he was at the heart of everything. He made a superb break which almost saw Rob Jackson over the line on 56 minutes and then, two tackles later, he went over himself after Leroy Joe had done well to get the ball away as he was tackled close to the posts. Rudd converted and the gap was just a point. Just after the hour Haven were ahead for the first time as Rudd backed himself and got the ball down despite the attention of three defenders. He converted his own try.The Halifax that had seemed so energetic and keen in the first period now looked out on their feet, steam rollered by a pumped up Haven they simply had no answer and started trying to force the play. Holroyd then came up with the error that ended Fax's hopes altogether with 11 minutes left to play. He forced a pass that was never on close to his own line, and the ball bounced along the ground nowhere near any of his team mates. Derry Eilbeck reacted quickest, diving on it to get the easiest try he'll ever score. This time the conversion was missed by Rudd, but the visitors body language suggested that it might as well have been a hundred points behind. There was time for one last Haven score, on 78 minutes, and again it was inspired by Duffy. He took on the tired defence 20 yards out and then showed superb skill to get the ball to Aaron Smith as he was being tackled close to the line. Smith dropped over the whitewash and Rudd converted, to complete a memorable comeback which those Haven fans who left at half time will be sorry they didn't stick around for.
HAVEN 1 Gary Broadbent, 2 Craig Calvert, 3 Rob Jackson, 4 Derry Eilbeck, 5 Steve Maden, 13 Carl Rudd, 7 John Duffy, 8 Steve Trindall, 9 Aaron Smith, 10 David Fatialofa, 11 Spencer Miller, 12 Richard Fletcher, 6 Leroy Joe ; Subs (all used) 14 Carl Sice, 15 Greame Mattinson, 16 Marc Jacskson
17 Scott Teare
5 Lee Greenwood; 6 Graham Holroyd, 7 Ian Watson; 8 Paul Southern, 9 Sean Penkywicz, 10 Frank Watene, 11 Danny Heaton, 12 Paul Smith, 13 Phil Joseph; Subs (all used) 14 Sam Hoare, 15 Damian Ball, 16 David Larder 17 Andy Shickell
Joe (31), Sice (50), Duffy (56) Rudd (61), Eilbeck (69), Smith (78)
Goals; Rudd 4/5, Fletcher 1/1.
Varkulis (17), Greenwood (22), Smith (28)
Goals; Holroyd 3/5
Field Goal; Watson (39).
Ref Jamie Leahy
WHITEHAVEN enjoyed an easy win against struggling Doncaster Lakers who looked out of their depth at The Recreation Ground. In truth the fact that Doncaster had made the trip at all was a victory for them and their supporters, having been saved from going out of business at the 11th hour. They were behind inside two minutes in this game, with Haven determined to get back to winning ways after last weekends shock defeat at home to Leigh. Big Aussie Steve Bull Trindall set the tone for the evening as he barged over the line for a try which Carl Rudd converted. On five minutes Doncaster had their first and only attack of the opening half, but Craig Calvert came up with a great ball and all tackle on Ade Adebisi to deny the winger. After 14 minutes the home side doubled their advantage after a piece of great individual skill from Rudd. He received an awful pass from acting half-back but managed to gather it and the switch the play, running sideways across the field until he found a gap. He then produced a sublime side footed kick through, which Richard Fletcher latched onto. Rudd added the extras,
Gamestar: Carl Sice. Richard Fletcher was head and shoulders above everyone until Sice joined the game on 26 minutes. A typical all action display from the vastly talent hooker, who on this form is a joy to watch. Fletcher will play worse then this and get the MoM award!
14 Jun 2007 - Haven announced that they have applied for planning permission to build new new stands either side of the B & H Motors stand.
Things started so well with the ever speedy Calvert running almost a full pitch to score. Rudd converted.
Leigh's Heremaia, who had a stunning game, was stunned himself when knocked out cold in a first half collision. Alan Rudd then touched down for Leigh Missed tackles by Teare and Benson allowed that no 7 Heremia in to make it 6-12 at the interval. In the opening of the second half Calvert was clearly obstructed but ref Ian Smith missed it. Haven allowed Leigh's Alstead to sprint up the wide spaces to start Leigh's steady pulling away from Haven. A Leigh drop kick bounced back from the post but clearly the home side were finding a fight back hard. Leigh seemd to have more fuel still in the tank in the searing heat. Fletcher made it over the line but that ref again ruled he had been held up. Alstead then scored again and it was only a consolation try under the sticks from debut signing Matty Dale that made the score line better. Leroy Rivett hammered home the final humiliation with a try after Haven failed to gather a loose ball.
LEIGH inflicted Whitehaven's second home league defeat in three seasons -- out-gunning the Cumbrians 12-28 at the Recreation Ground.
Not many sides make the trip north to The Recre and leave with anything more then a few bumps and bruises, but this youthful Leigh side were on top in all departments and deservedly headed home with the three points. Darren Shaw's side looked up for the contest, and made the better start, attacking the Haven line right from the kick-off.
They were unlucky not to get the game's first try on four minutes when livewire Martin Ainscough took on the Haven defence. He stepped inside Craig Benson and looked odds on to score when Gary Broadbent made a first class ball and all tackle that left the Leigh man millimetres short of the whitewash.
On the next play Aaron Heremaia's kick through was fielded by John Duffy and Haven quickly moved the ball the wide to Craig Calvet.
Calvert then did what he does best, pinned his head back and took on Wembley wonder Leroy Rivett. He ran around the ex-Super League winger and then galloped almost 90 metres from his own line to score, with Rivett not able to get close enough to even attempt to tackle him.
Carl Rudd landed the touchline conversion and suddenly the Recre was rocking.
Whitehaven then started to get on top, domination the next five minutes as Leigh had the first.
But ill-discipline cost them dear when, with the visitors struggling to get clear of their line, Haven allowed them to gain 8- metres in two plays when first they were penalised for interference and Damien Couturier kicked Leigh up to half way.
Then as Leigh tapped the ball Haven were guilty of a stupid off-side infringement, handing Courtiuer the chance to boot his side deep into the Haven half.
Just a couple of phases later a lovely inside pass from Ainscough sent Adam Rudd crashing over the line from ten yards out to, and Courturier's conversion levelled the score on 11 minutes at six all.
Whitehaven again tried to step up their performance, but Leigh's hard working defence meant that the best they could manage was when Carl Rudd chased his own kick on 20 minutes. The Haven stand-off appeared to be winning the race with Heremaia to the ball as it bounced in-goal but Kiwi stepped across him to see off the danger.
Calvert's pace was again a problem for Leigh when he gathered Duffy's deft chip over the defence and raced away from his own 30 metre line.
This time however full-back Miles Greenwood was on hand to help Rivett and although neither were able to catch Calvert they were able to force him to run across field towards where others were tracking back, and he was grounded by the traffic.
The game was well poised but gradually the enthusiasm in the Leigh tackling began to take its toll as they started to get the better of the arm wrestle in the middle of the park.
That increasing dominance paid off when Heremaia took advantage of some pretty sloppy defending to score from close range on 34 minutes, and Couturier converted to send the visitors in 6-12 ahead at the interval.
Whitehaven came out all guns blazing and forced a knock on early in the tackle out with some ferocious tackling after kicking off. They then battered the Leigh line for five minutes without ever really looking likely to unlock it.
The closest they came was on 45 minutes, when Calvert was fed the ball wide. The pacey winger hacked it forward and as he gave chase looked to be taken out by Rivett and Heremaia, but referee Ian Smith waved away the protests from the Haven players and fans.
And just two minutes later it was game over.
With the Leigh defence proving impossible to crack Haven started forcing passes, desperately trying to get back on level terms.
One such pass was plucked from the air by Dave Alstead, who, just like Calvert in the first half, pinned his head back and raced away.
Alstead isn't the quickest winger in the league, but with the Haven defenders racing forward he was 30 yards clear before anyone realised he had the ball, and he was quick enough to beat the only man who chased him, Leroy Joe.
Couturier again converted, and although with over half and hour to play there was plenty of time for a Haven fight back, the body language of the players suggested that such a thing was unlikely. Whitehaven's ageing pack looked dead and buried in the heat, particularly when Richard Fletcher was withdrawn shortly afterwards, and in contrast the youthful Leigh side still seemed full of energy. Before leaving the action Fletcher came the closest of anyone to getting Haven back in the game, but he was held up as he tried to ground the ball on 55 minutes.
On 67 Alstead grabbed his second try when he was quickest to react to a grubber kick into the corner from Heremaia, and he beat Benson to the bobbling ball. This time Couturier's conversion was wide, but by now the Centurions were home and dry.
In this crazy world of bonus points for narrow defeats Haven did keep plugging away, and when debutant Matty Dale latched onto a flat pass from Duffy on 77 minutes to score a try which Rudd converted it looked like they would get at least something from the game.
However they contrived to throw that away when, with just a few seconds left on the clock, Scott Teare lost the ball in the tackle 40 metres from his own line. Aaron Lester looked too tiered to pick it up, and Leroy Rivett seized the chance, gathering and beating Derry Eilbeck in a race for the line. Couturier again converted. This was a game where Haven, so hard to beat at the Recre, finally came unstuck against a Leigh team which, on the day, was better in every department. With five outside backs missing through injury Haven might have been worried about the experience in the Leigh backs, but it was upfront where they were completely and utterly out muscled. Malinga Styles, a back row forward playing at prop, was the corner stone of a Leigh pack which was itself missing two regulars, Dana Wilson and Warren Stevens, and to a man the Centurions out-gunned their opponents. Styles, the best player on the field, even had enough energy left to do some celebratory cart-wheels at the end to the delight of the travelling support who, if in thought rather then deed, were probably joining in with the acrobatics. Haven coach Dave Rotheram said; "They beat us up the middle today, they were more enthusiastic then us and they out played us." His Leigh counterpart and former London Broncos team-mate Darren Shaw added; "This is an intimidating place to come, not many sides get any change out of Whitehaven up here. "But I have a lot of young guys in the side and they have no fear of reputations, some of them are 19 or 20-year-old kids, they were full of energy and desire."
Dave Alstead's interception try made the gap 12 points and took the wind out of Haven, who had started the second half brightly.
Malinga Styles; He took on the Haven pack and was magnificent. Playing out of position at prop he never stopped running and made good yards every time. Must have made 30 hit ups and only had one, very brief, spell off the field. Heremaia was also exceptional.
1 Gary Broadbent
2 Craig Calvert
3 Spencer Miller
4 Derry Eilbeck
5 Craig Benson
6 Carl Rudd
7 John Duffy
8 Steve Trindal
9 Aaron Smith
10 David Fatialofa
11 Matty Dale
12 Richard Fletcher
13 Aaron Lester
15 Leroy Joe
16 Marc Jackson
17 Scott Teare
1 Miles Greenwood
2 Leroy Rivett
3 Damien Couturier
4 Anthony Stewart
5 David Alstead
6 Martin Ainscough
7 Aaron Heremaia
8 John Cookson
9 John CLough
10 Malinga Styles
11 Adam Rudd
12 Adam Thomas
13 James Taylor
14 Chad Isles
15 Matt Astley
16 Chris Hall
17 Sean Richardson
Goals; C Rudd 2/2
Leigh; Tries; A Rudd (11) Heremaia (34) Alstead (47, 67) Rivett (79)
Goals; Couturier 4/5
Ref; Ian Smith
Gate 2,065 Hertel Man of Match John Duffy.
tries from Seeds,Maden, Duffy, Mattinson, Fatialofa and Calvert
WHITEHAVEN knocked out a determined Barrow in a cracker of a Cumbrian derby at The Recreation Ground. This pulsating match was in the balance right up until the last five minutes, when Haven scored two converted tries to finally kill off the visitors' resistance and win 34-14.
HAVEN 40 Halifax 24...TRIES FLETCHER (2) EILBECK (2), BROADBENT, R.JACKSON AND SICE.
The visitors led for much of the game but faded in the second period as Whitehaven's forwards took control. In Haven's last league outing they were beaten at Doncaster by a side who had old stager Graham Holroyd pulling all the strings so you could have forgiven them if they cursed their luck when they saw the shaven headed stand-off taking to the field in a Halifax jersey for this encounter.
And in the early part of the game, just as he had at Doncaster, Holroyd ran the show behind a strong forward pack. It took them just four minutes to register the first try of the match, Richard Varkulis evaded the tackle of David Seeds and then as he was grounded by the covering defence was able to slip the ball out to Marcus George. Tim Hartley converted. If that try prompted a few nervous twitches amongst the Haven faithful then 'Fax's second on 11 minutes had them positively reeling.
This time it was Paul Smith who waltzed through a tackle from Carl Rudd and past to Hartley, who coasted over for a try which he then converted.
It wasn't so much the fact that they had registered two quick scores, but the ease with which they were gaining ground and breaking tackles that must have surprised Halifax's travelling supporters. Halifax were in control but some strong running from David Fatialofa gave the home side decent field position and when Richard Fletcher judged the bounce of John Duffy's grubber perfectly on 16 minutes they had a try of their own to celebrate, which Rudd converted. Haven were now gathering momentum, Rob Jackson broke from his own half on 19 minutes but was hauled down by the last man, full back Damien Gibson. However as 'Fax tried to regroup a Greame Mattinson chip and chase was spilled by Gibson. Mattinson hacked on and Gary Broadbent won the foot race to touch down. Rudd again added the extras, and suddenly Halifax's dominant start had been wiped out. Most of the home support thought that their side would now kick on and win comfortably, but Halifax had other ideas. George made a clear break from his own half and was unfortunate to be tackled by the ever reliable Broadbent. The ball found its way to Holroyd who launched a high bomb which, thankfully for Whitehaven, Seeds was able to defuse. However the danger wasn't over, and the next time Halifax got the ball they made their dominance count. Damien Ball made a clear break and managed to get the ball away to Mark Roberts before he was tackled. Roberts ran clear to score and put the visitors back in front. Hartley again tacked on the two.
On 31 minutes the visitors thought they had scored again, a kick through from Holroyd was pounced on in-goal by Gibson, but the full back was adjudged to have fumbled as he grounded the ball. That mistake was to prove costly as Haven went up the other end of the field and scored themselves, Fletcher finishing off a fine move by Duffy and Carl Sice for a try which Rudd converted to level the scores going into the interval.
The visitors started the second half like they were determined to win the match and not fade away like they did when they took on another promotion contender, Widnes, recently. On 42 minutes they regained the lead. The impressive Frank Watene made huge ground up the middle and, with defenders scrambling, a fine long pass from Holroyd to Lee Greenwood put the winger clear. Greenwood gave the ball back inside to Paul Smith who touched down, and the impressive Hartley knocked over his fourth goal of the afternoon. That could have been the cue for Halifax to go on and win the game, but instead it was Whitehaven who took control. On 44 minutes the brilliant Fletcher made a powerful run from his own half and showed great speed to stay clear of the chasing pack. He drew Gibson and then at exactly the right moment he slipped the ball to Derry Eilbeck on his right shoulder. Eilbeck still had 40 metres to go to the line and he looked around for support before backing himself to beat the chasing Marcus George. Eilbeck had the legs and pulled clear to score under the posts. Rudd converted to level the scores again. The game was on a knife edge and for the next 10 minutes the two forward packs engaged in a midfield arm wrestle. Despite the size and strength of Watene and Paul Southern you just felt that Haven, with Fatialofa back to his best and Trindall as strong as ever, would win through as gradually they started to seize control.
Whitehaven steadily built up pressure and on 53 minutes some superb centre play by Seeds made some space for Craig Calvert. Calvert was bundled into touch by the covering defender just before he could ground the ball and, after some great play by Fatialfoa and Leroy Joe on 57 minutes exactly same thing happened again, with the wingman catching the ball just as the scrambling defence bundled him over the whitewash. The pressure finally told on the hour when the otherwise impressive Hartley fumbled Rudd's poor kick through and Eilbeck pounced to give Haven the lead for the first time. Rudd missed his conversion attempt. The home side were now dominating and after Calvert had a try disallowed for a knock on (62) Rob Jackson latched onto Leroy Joe's grubber kick to put Whitehaven two scores clear. Rudd this time converted.
The exception Stephen Banniser wasted a chance to cap a fine individual performance with a try when he spilled the ball having done well to break clear from Duffy's pass (76). But, on 79 minutes, Carl Sice wrapped up the win for Haven -- and denied the visitors a bonus point -- with his trade-mark dive over the line from acting half back. Rudd tacked on the two.
WHITEHAVEN'S forwards took total control in the second half, cutting off Holroyd's supply line, and allowing their own ball players to shine.
1 Gary Broadbent
2 Craig Calvert
3 David Seeds
4 Rob Jackson
5 Derry Eilbeck
6 Carl Rudd
7 John Duffy
8 Steve Trindall
9 Graeme Mattinson
10 David Fatialofa
11 Stephen Bannister
12 Richard Fletcher
13 Aaron Smith
Subs (all used)
14 Carl Sice
15 Leroy Joe
16 Ricky Wright
17 Scott Teare
1 Damian Gibson;
2 Marcus George,
3 Richard Varkulis,
4 Tim Hartley
5 Lee Greenwood;
6 Graham Holroyd ,
7 Ian Watson;
8 Paul Southern,
9 Sam Hoare,
10 David Wrench,
11 David Larder,
12 Paul Smith,
13 Damian Ball.
Subs (all used)
14 Sean Penkywicz,
14 Mark Roberts
16 Aaron Trinder,
17 Frank Watene
Tries; Fletcher (16, 34) Broadbent (19) Eilbeck (44, 60) Jackson (66) Sice (79).
Goals; Rudd 6/7
Tries George (4) Hartley (11) Roberst (26) Smith (42)
Goals; Hartley 4/4
Ref. Mike Dawber
Attendance 1, 729
Scoring sequence; 0-6, 0-12, 6-12, 12-12, 12-18, 18-18, 18-24, 24-24, 28-24, 34-24, 40-24.
HAVEN have signed Warrington Wolves teenager Marc Shackley and he is being tipped as a potential first-teamer this season. The 18-year-old, from Egremont, joined the Super League Wolves on a three-year pro deal at 16.
Haven 14- Catalan Dragons 24 (4-12)
big No Vote
In the Allerdale elections those councillors pushing for Town's new stadium get voted off by the Save the Cloffocks candidates....
Whitehaven today signed Saint Helen's youngster Stephen Bannister.
In honour of our Kiwi heroes, Aaron Lester, David Fatialofa and Leroy Joe, special testimonial shirts are due to go on sale at Billy's Unique Sports. They are priced at £25 each.
Richard Fletch and the squad seen earlier as they held kitman Jimmy Clements aloft...read about Jimmy's work for the club .
against Dons in another Era
Great new signings for Haven this week including Richard Fletcher, ex-Castleford.
Onwards and upwards !
What are Red Hall Doing now?
Get your calculators out and see what on earth the new points rules mean?
Official explanation of points changes
Also the 'official' WhitehavenRL message board shows David Fatialofa suffered cracked arm in the mud-spattered Derby.
Our friends at Jennings have agreed to provide another year's sponsorship for Haven. Geoff Tarry from Jennings, left shakes the hand of Whitehaven's chairman Des Byrne in the club's Jennings Lounge as the brewery announces that it is staying with the club as a sponsor. With them is record try scorer David Seeds.
Pride of Five Lottery draw