Castleford hold off Halifax challenge

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Castleford reached the second round of the Premiership with a 23-18 win at Halifax, thanks to a late try by centre Adrian Vowles.

Castleford had just cleared their own lines and, when scrum-half Mike Ford's kick to the corner bounced awkwardly over Halifax full-back Mike Umlega's head, Vowles took his chance.

Castleford stand-off Brad Davis scored in the corner after 11 minutes and six minutes later a scrum caught Halifax napping on the blindside and Vowles took advantage. They got their third after 24 minutes via Andrew Schick, Davis converting for 18-0.

Halifax replied before half-time when Martin Pearson set up a chance for Paul Rowley but Castleford got an important drop goal through Ford two minutes into the second half.

The Blue Sox pulled a try back straight away through winger David Bouveng and John Schuster's second conversion, followed by a penalty, brought it back to 14-19. When Michael Jackson went over the game was on a knife edge, but Schuster could not convert, leaving Halifax still a point adrift before Vowles' final try.