Challenge Cup: Widnes Vikings hammer Coventry Bears 90-0

Rugby League
Danny Craven of Widnes
Danny Craven of Widnes

Widnes rewrote the record books as they hammered minnows Coventry Bears 90-0 in the Challenge Cup fifth round to record their biggest ever victory.

Denis Betts' side were in control from the first minute to the last, running in 17 tries to surpass the 88-0 scoreline they racked up against Saddleworth Rangers in 2009.

Danny Craven scored four tries while Rhys Hanbury and Patrick Ah Van touched down for trebles as Tom Gilmore kicked 11 conversions.

Coventry booked their place in this fixture against the seven-time winners with a plucky victory over St Helens outfit Pilkington Recs back in March, but Widnes put an abrupt end to any fairytale cup performance with a powerful Super League level display.

It became nothing more than a training ground exercise as the Vikings racked up a 54-0 lead at the break.

The writing was on the wall from the very first play as Alex Gerrard broke through three tacklers to create a simple walk over for Hanbury.

The Australian went on to complete his hat-trick before half-time.

Ah Van, on his return to the side after sustaining a broken arm in Widnes' win over Catalans Dragons, also crossed for a double in the first period as the Vikings scored with virtually every play.

Lloyd White, another returning senior member of the Vikings' starting line-up, also made a scoring contribution after a lengthy lay-off.

Youngsters Brad Walker and Matty Whitley celebrated their three-year contract extensions with tries, while Craven hit a brace as the Bears ran out of gas before half-time.

The tries continued for Widnes after the restart with Ed Chamberlain benefiting from Gilmore's long, looping pass.

Craven and Ah Van were next in line to complete hat-tricks as the Vikings passed the 70-point mark.

Danny Walker shot over the whitewash next with a scampering run from dummy-half and then Craven walked in for his fourth.

Gilmore, who finished the game with 22 points, then provided a four-pointer for Jay Chapelhow when he could have scored himself.

The record-breaking score came five minutes from time as Chamberlain sent in Ryan Ince on the right edge.

The chase was on for Widnes to hit 100 with three minutes remaining in the game but they fell agonisingly short.

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