Burnley earned a much-needed 34-0 win over Widnes side Birchfield at Holden Road on Saturday.
Despite Birchfield’s late arrival, the locals were caught napping as as a clever switch kick from kick-off nearly yielded a score.
Their clever cross kicks and quick line outs also asked early questions of Burnley’s defence, however, a penalty quickly taken on by Luca Angelone saw him feed brother Niño, who crashed over.
Gus Ferguson added the conversion.
But poor kicking and discipline meant Burnley struggled to build any momentum, and the hosts then had a player sent off after a melee - the visitors’ kicker missing the ensuing penalty attempt.
This seemed to inspire Burnley. and several scrums rocked Birchfield, before he game settled into a pattern of Burnley losing loose ball, but able to regain from their excellent set piece.
Burnley won another penalty to extend their lead to 13-0 at the half.
Burnley began the second period in blistering fashion as Luca Angelone crashed over after a minute. Ferguson added the extras
Birchfield hit back, winning a penalty and kicking for the corner, but their centre lost the ball with the line at his mercy.
Burnley were looking edgy, but Ian Coates picked off one attack, the excellent Will Farnworth produced one great kick and chase and Jack Donovan won a great line out ball.
Then up stepped Ives with a blistering run that brushed off several defenders and resulted in him crashing over, only to be held up by a committed defence. From the scrum, there was no mistake, Ashley Rothwell picked up and fed Finnan, who dived over. Ferguson rediscovered his kicking touch with his most difficult effort of the afternoon.
Burnley’s pack then found top gear, producing an impressive drive that scattered the defenc,e with Finnan having an armchair ride to the line, Ferguson again adding a difficult kick.
The seconds went down 29-19 at Oldham with tries from Anthony Clarke, Matt Higson and Steve Harrison
The thirds also lost 37-7 to a very good Aspull side.after Christian Allanson opened the scoring. Man of the match was John Richmond.
The girls had mixed fortunes, beating Littleborough 24-0 before losing 35-14 to Eccles.
The children’s Christmas party takes place at 7 p.m. tonight.
Tomorrow, the first and second teams are home to Didsbury and Sedgley Park, and the thirds are at Vale of Lune, all 2-15pm kick-offs.
On Sunday the Under 7/8/9/10 and 11s are at Tarleton in a three-way with Preston Grasshoppers from 11 a.m., the Under 13/15s are training, and the Colts are at Ormskirk at 2 p.m.