Super League: Widnes Vikings 29-22 Catalans Dragons
|Widnes (18) 29|
|Tries: Ah Van (2), Gilmore, Flynn (2) Goals: Marsh (3) Gilmore Drop Goals: Gilmore|
|Catalans (12) 22|
|Tries: Anderson, Whitehead (2) Escare Goals: Dureau (3)|
Two tries for full-back Paddy Flynn helped Widnes Vikings secure a comfortable win over Catalans Dragons.
Catalans took an early 12-point lead thanks to tries from Louis Anderson and Elliot Whitehead, before Patrick Ah Van crossed to halve the deficit.
Tom Gilmore's try levelled the scores, and he then set up Paddy Flynn to put the Vikings up 18-12 at halftime.
Tries for Flynn and Ah Van sealed the victory, while Whitehead and Morgan Escare scored late on for the Dragons.
Widnes's victory keeps alive their slim hopes of making the Super 8s, as they remain three points outside the Super League top eight with two games left to play.
|A welcome return to form|
|Widnes Vikings had lost their previous five games in all competitions prior to beating Catalans|
The result was marred by injuries to Stefan Marsh and Chris Dean, which meant the home side finished the game with no recognised centres.
The home side had looked in trouble after Whitehead beat several Vikings players to run in from 20 metres out and put the French side two scores up inside 15 minutes.
Ah Van responded with his first try two minutes later, while Gilmore's score shifted the momentum firmly in the direction of the hosts.
Flynn held off three tacklers to put his side ahead for the first time, before he kept his balance down the touchline to double the advantage.
Gilmore added a penalty and a drop goal, while his kick to set up Ah Van put the game out of Catalans' reach, despite a late rally.
Widnes head coach Dave Betts:
"I thought the second half was an outstanding performance. We were a little beaten up with Stef Marsh and Chris Dean both coming off but we re-jigged it and dug deep and that was enough.
"Catalans are a tough side and we needed this win. The start was everything. They do get off to good starts but we knew that and what was important to us was sticking in the fight.
"I knew if we did that then we would come out the other side. We didn't let the start affect us."
Catalans head coach Laurent Frayssinous:
"We had opportunities and we just didn't score. We showed we can break the line but in the end it was too late - the game was over.
"Credit to Widnes for the win. We have a lot of injuries at the moment and there are some positives we can take from it.
"We can be proud of what the club is doing with the kids but it will take time."
Widnes: Hanbury, Flynn, Dean, Marsh, Ah Van, Gilmore, Mellor, O'Carroll, Heremaia, Dudson, Clarkson, Galea, Cahill, Manuokafoa.
Replacements: Manuokafoa for O'Carroll (20), Gerrard for Dudson (14), Isa for Cahill (23), Leuluai for Manuokafoa (37).
Catalans Dragons: Escare, Inu, Gigot, Pomeroy, Sigismeau, Albert, Dureau, Lima, Henderson, Casty, Whitehead, Anderson, Baitieri.
Replacements: Mounis for Lima (21), Margalet for Henderson (48), Bousquet for Casty (22), Garcia for Baitieri (24).
Referee: Robert Hicks (RFL).