Rugby League: Widnes on way up

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Wakefield Trinity. . .0

Widnes . . . . . . . .10

WIDNES won away from home for the first time since March but only got their nudge up the First Division last night by virtue of being the less bad of two inept sides, writes Dave Hadfield.

The reasons for Wakefield and Widnes occupying two of the bottom three places in the table were all too apparent in some untidy play. What threat there was, two powerful runs by John Devereux and breaks for Trinity by Gary Spencer and Geoff Bagnall, petered out for lack of support.

One Widnes touchdown was ruled out for a forward pass from Paul Hulme to his brother, David. Lee Hanlon was held just short at the other end from Bagnall's pass.

When a try finally arrived it was a predictably scruffy affair, Spencer failing by yards to get under Bobby Goulding's high kick and the Wakefield defence stood transfixed as the ball made its way to Adrian Hadley who scored almost absentmindedly.

It would hardly have been sumptuous fare for the Minister for Sport, Iain Sproat, who wisely found a traffic jam near Sheffield to delay him long enough to miss the match.

Perhaps if he had seen it, he would have been receptive to a request for a grant to run courses in basic skills. The need was demonstrated often enough as both sides continued to drop the ball at every opportunity.

Wakefield spent plenty of time in the Widnes 25, but lacked the wit to break through.

Their pressure sent Steve McCurrie to the sin-bin for deliberate offside but, far from exploiting that advantage, Wakefield immediately allowed themselves to be opened up. David Myers should have scored when given a clear run by Paul Hulmes' pass but Goulding arrived to finish it off. Devereux added the goal to complete an undistinguished but important win.

Wakefield Trinity: Spencer; Brown (Christie, 58), Mason, Goddard, Wilson (Brown, 73); Hanlon, Bagnall; Marlow (Durham, 71), Bell, Durham (Conway, 40), Woods, Forshaw, Longstaff.

Widnes: Spruce; Myers, Devereux, Ruane, Hadley; D Hulme, Goulding; Ireland (Smith, 40), McCurrie, Howe, Faimalo, Grieve, P Hulme. Substitute: Hammond.

Referee: G McCallum (Sydney).