Catalan Dragons 92 York City Knights 8: Knights have no answer to the power of Dragons

Catalans Thomas BoscCatalans Thomas Bosc
Catalans Thomas Bosc
Catalan Dragons progressed to the quarter-finals of the Tetley’s Challenge Cup with a devastating thrashing of the York City Knights.

The home side had it all their own way from the seventh minute after trailing to an early Tom Carr penalty.

Eloi Pelissier and Thomas Bosc were the Knights’ tormentors as the Dragons raced into a 46-2 half-time lead, second-rower Kevin Larroyer scoring four tries to add to efforts from Daryl Millard, Morgan Escare (two) and Bosc.

Bosc also added seven conversions from eight attempts.

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After the break, the home side carried on where they left off as they scored three tries in the opening seven minutes.

Vincent Duport, Escare and Damien Blanch all went over to extend the Dragons’ lead to 62-2, with Bosc adding a further two conversions to add to his tally.

York chanced their arm and thought they had scored in the 50th minute only to have the try ruled out by referee Thierry Alibert for a double movement.

Catalan raced up field and Jamal Fakir powered his way over from 10 metres out, Barthau adding the conversion after Bosc had been substituted.

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Catalans could not handle the restart and from the goal-line drop-out, York scored their consolation, with Kris Brining going over. Carr added the goal to take the score to 68-8.

The French hosts quickly re-asserted their superiority with Zeb Taia, Remi Casty (2) and Barthau going over in the last 12 minutes of the game. Barthau converted his fifth goal from five attempts as the Dragons ran out convincing winners.

York coach Gary Thornton refused to let the scoreline cloud the performance his side put in.

“Although we didn’t have the ball very often, I thought our performance when we did have it was pretty good. I was pleased with that, but defensively they were far too strong for us,” he said.

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“The likes of Leon Pryce, Thomas Bosc and Eloi Pelissier killed us around the ruck. They do everything so quickly and some of the skill levels within the Catalans are absolutely fantastic and I was in awe of some of it.

“They are very skilful, very athletic and defensively we just couldn’t handle them. I said to my boys that when we get the ball, let’s try and play football and I think we did that today.”

Catalans coach Laurent Frayssinous was left delighted that his side had put in a professional performance.

“I’m very happy because we needed to bounce back today from our poor performance last week against Wakefield and we were very hard on the players this week,” Frayssinous said.

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Catalan Dragons: Escare, Blanch, Duport, Millard, Pala, Pryce, Bosc, Simon, Pelissier, Casty, Taia, Larroyer, Mounis. Substitutes: Barthau, Maria, Fakir, Baile.

York: Carr, Elliot, Browne, Minikin, Dent, Brown, Presley, Potter, Illey, Aldous, Smith, Lyons, Pickets. Substitutes: Bell, Brining, Haynes, Stanchion.

Referee: T Alibert (RFL).