Sicilian Select XIII 0
North West English Lionhearts 70
Tries: Harry Warburton (2), Scott Robinson, Danny Brown, Dave Kennedy (3), Jordan Penny (3), Jack McHugh (2), Paul Rickleton
Goals: Scott Robinson (4/6), Jordan Gibson (5/7)
Against a spirited and proud Sicilian Select XIII the Lionhearts came away with a win in the first game of their three match tour, led by hat-tricks from Jordan Penny and Dave Kennedy.
The local side went behind almost immediately after Wigan Bulldog Stuart Pemberton claimed a bouncing kick off and the team worked the ball right to Folly Lane’s Harry Warburton who grounded the ball.
Instead of a deluge of points after that there was a stubborn ten minutes of resistance from the hosts, who created little opportunity of their own but put their bodies on the line to prevent any further score until Scott Robinson (Wigan St Judes), Danny Brown (Latchford Albion) and Kennedy (Orrell St James) crossed the line in quick succession.
After a water break in the searing heat the Sicilians steadied the ship to prevent the Lionhearts scoring again until just before half time when Penny (Wigan St Cuthberts) went over for a quick double to make it 32-0 at the break.
The second half began in a similar manner to the first. Vice-Captain Kennedy went over for his second score of the game, but after Captain Jordan Gibson of Haydock kicked the goal there was ten minutes of resistance from the Sicily Select.
However, this time after a repeat set for a rip near the line allowed Penny in for his hat-trick try the home side weren’t able to dig any deeper into their energy reserves and the floodgates opened a little.
From kick-off Warburton went over for his second score, before Jack McHugh of Orrell St James got himself on the scoresheet shortly after. Two long distance tries in three minutes followed that as a tired Sicily began to struggle, Kennedy first completing his hat-trick before McHugh stretched his legs to out pace the full back to the corner.
The Italian players found it in themselves to have their most sustained period of territory of the game as it drew to a close. However, despite their passion and effort they couldn’t find their way through the English defence before Hindpool Tigers’ Paul Rickleton ended the game with the Lionhearts’ thirteenth try which Gibson converted to close it at 70-0.
The Lionhearts tourists will next be in action on Wednesday 18th at 6pm CET in the first of two matches against Italy ‘A’ with the final game taking place on Saturday 21st at 11am. Both games take place at CUS Catania.
North West English Lionhearts: Jack McHugh (Orrell St James), Harry Warburton (Folly Lane), Scott Robinson (Wigan St Judes), Jordan Penny (Wigan St Cuthberts), Stuart Pemberton (Wigan Bulldogs), Jordan Gibson (Haydock), Deane Meadows (Shevington Sharks), Wayne Bullough (Garswood Stags), Connor Dutton (That Heath Crusaders), Ryan Ashall (Wigan St Cuthberts), Danny Gee (Haydock), Dave Kennedy (Orrell St James), Danny Brown (Latchford Albion); Paul Rickleton (Hindpool Tigers), Lewis Grimes (Leigh Miners Rangers), Ben Jones (Wigan St Judes), Josh Hill (Manchester Rangers), Phil Woollacott (Latchford Albion), Sam Lewis (Orrell St James), Ryan Braddock (Wigan St Patricks)
Sicilian Select XIII: Luca Nicotra, Salvatore Lipera, Marco Panebianco, Cristian Ardito, Salvatore Catania, Leonardo Artale, Hliwa Achraf, Giordano Arema, Riccardo Crocellå, Igor Giammario, Roberto Greco, Sebastian Sapia, Francesco Mendosa, Anthony Virzi, Gianluca Privitera, Giovanni Rizzo, Mario Di Sano, Emanuele Lucignano, Michael Russo, Corrado Alessi, Massimiliano Giannino, Simone Orazio Scudieri
Referee: Tara Jones (Warrington)