Sice stars as Cumbria win Nines
Published at 11:09, Thursday, 28 June 2012
WHITEHAVEN hooker Carl Sice was named man of the tournament as Cumbria pulled off a massive shock to win the Rugby League Nines at Headingley.
The county outfit, including match-winners from Haven, Workington Town and Barrow, beat fancied Super League sides Wakefield and Leeds, who finished in the top two positions in the East qualifying group, before toppling Featherstone in the final.
And a Sice try in the showpiece on Tuesday night confirmed his position as the tournament’s top player.
He said: “It feels good to get the win. The lads were unlucky last year, but we talked about it this year and fancied our chances when a couple of the top teams, Wigan and Warrington, went out early doors.
“We thought we could capitalise on the opportunity.”
Cumbria were beaten in the final by Warrington last year but pulled clear in the second-half against Featherstone to win 16-10 after being held 6-6 at the break.
Joint coach Don Gailer said: “It’s been a great night for the boys and a great night for Cumbria.”
Cumbria, sponsored by NMP, opened with a 10-0 win over Wakefield, who topped the East qualifying group with 11 wins from 12 outings, before looking equally comfortable in an 18-4 rout of the Rhinos.
Cumbria struck first in the final, Sice and Barrow’s Liam Campbell creating space for Workington’s pacey Elliott Miller to cross, Carl Forber converting.
Rovers hit back with a converted try with just 10 seconds left in the first-half. Carter scrambled back to deny Featherstone a long-range try early in the second period, before Sice latched on to Town half-back Forber’s cross-field kick to go between the sticks.
Barrow’s James Dandy made sure the trophy would return to Cumbria with last-gasp try.
Town boss Gary Charlton, who shared coaching duties with Gailer, said: “The boys love this competition, it puts them in the spotlight, hopefully for bigger clubs to come and have a little look at them, because we have a lot of good players up in Cumbria.”
Cumbria: Ackerley, Hamzat, Sice, Gee, Crellin (all Haven); Miller, Olstrum, Carter, Dawes, Gaskell, Forber (all Town); Backhouse, Campbell, Dandy, McGoff (all Barrow).
Published by http://www.whitehavennews.co.uk
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