Rugby League

1895 Cup

29 Jan 2024

AB Sundecks 1895 Cup Review | Round One

AB Sundecks 1895 Cup Review | Round One

There were some big score-lines at the weekend in Round One of the AB Sundecks 1895 Cup, as a number of Betfred Championship and League One clubs returned to competitive action. 

League One clubs would play host, in what was the first set of the competition’s group stage fixtures.  

The most notable result of the weekend was Oldham’s incredible victory over current 1895 Cup holders Halifax. In what was the closest encounter across all seven fixtures, Sean Long’s men held off a late fight back from favourites Panthers to record a famous 24-20 win at Boundary Park, in front of a jubilant home crowd. 

On Oldham's victory, their Head Coach Sean Long was extremely proud of his side's efforts:

"I'm really proud of the lads - we came up against a very good Halifax Panthers team, who have made some good signings.

"I thought we worked really hard and the effort was there. It was a tough game. I think we've set the standards now and we can't go back from that."

Barrow also kickstarted their 2024 campaign with a win, ensuring that their remarkable run of form would continue, beating Workington Town, 30-8. Their 1895 Cup win follows three consecutive pre-season victories, as the Raiders look like a force to be reckoned with in the second tier.

Keighley Cougars also triumphed with a comfortable 35-6 win over Dewsbury Rams in their first cup tie, whilst Featherstone Rovers produced a dominant display over rivals Hunslet, easing to a 62-6 victory.

It was a solid effort from a freshly-faced Featherstone, who fielded eight new faces on Sunday. Captain Ben Reynolds was an integral figure on the pitch, leading his team to victory and producing the expansive play which would result in a flurry of tries, including a trademark Gareth Gale hat-trick and a brace each for Connor Jones and Greg Minikin. 

York then began their 2024 campaign in emphatic style, with a ruthless 114-10 display against Newcastle Thunder - who made a decision to rejoin RFL’s third tier back in December. 

The Knights’ ruthless performance saw Connor Bailey score four times against his former club, with Will Dagger scoring a hat-trick for on his debut, highlighting York’s determination to compete near the top of the Championship this year. 

It is the biggest winning margin since the competition’s creation in 2019, but Newcastle would be the ones who scored first on the day and never gave up the fight, despite recent adversity and struggles they have faced. Meanwhile, York’s magnificent victory will go down in history, as Andrew Henderson was thrilled with his side’s efforts and clinical performance. 

Elsewhere, Swinton Lions kickstarted their 1895 Cup run with a 40-12 win, as they travelled to and faced North Wales Crusaders. 

And Doncaster would prove too strong for Midlands Hurricanes, as the newly-promoted Dons triumphed 40-4. The Hurricanes would put up an impressive fight in the first 40 minutes - with both sides scoreless until Doncaster broke through on the 33rd minute, as Tom Halliday touched down in the corner. 

Five tries in the second half would then cement the win for Doncaster, as they aim for a big year in the Championship. 


AB Sundecks 1895 Cup Round One results in full:

Round Two will take place this weekend with ties to be played on Sunday 4 February. 

AB Sundecks 1895 Cup Round Two fixtures in full:

Batley Bulldogs v Featherstone Rovers

Whitehaven RLFC v Barrow Raiders

Dewsbury Rams v Bradford Bulls

York Knights RLFC v Wakefield Trinity

Rochdale Hornets v Halifax Panthers

Swinton Lions v Widnes Vikings

Doncaster RLFC v Sheffield Eagles

The AB Sundecks 1895 Cup Final is part of a Finals Day triple-header at Wembley Stadium on Saturday 8 June, alongside the finals of the Betfred Women's Challenge Cup and Men's 2024 Betfred Challenge Cup FinalTickets are available online now from only £15 Adults and £7.50 Under 16s, with family packages also available starting from just £18.75 for one Adult and two Under 16s.