FIVE amateur rugby league stars from Hull helped Great Britain Community Lions get their tour of South Africa off to a winning start in Johannesburg.

The Lions are on a three-game tour in the southern hemisphere and are playing in two warm-up games in the build up to the Test match against the South African Rhinos on Saturday in Vanderbijlpark on Saturday.

And they will head into the second of their friendly clashes, against South African Universities & Colleges on Wednesday evening, in fine form after beating South Africa 'A' 42-22.

The team were led by skipper and second row Sean Wildbore, who plays his club rugby at Skirlaugh, while his team-mate Jordan Precious started the game in the half-backs, and was on kicking duty, while East Hull's Lee Brown started at prop.

Fellow Skirlaugh duo Steve Atkinson and Matty Bower started on the bench, with forward Bower chipping in with one of the tries after coming on in the second half.

The Lions made the perfect start to their summer tour when, on two minutes, a break from Ince Rose Bridge scrum-half Tony Baker was backed up and finished off with a try for Leigh East loose forward Gary Middlehurst.

Four minutes later Great Britain were on the score sheet again when a long pass from Baker found York Acorn winger Joe Budd who touched down out wide.

On 15 minutes a break from Wigan St Judes' full-back Paul Pendlebury was well backed up by Oulton winger Chris Walker who raced 40 meters to score under the posts, with Precious kicking the easy conversion attempt.

South Africa hit back with a try of their own, but GB responded with a try for Judes' Gavin Corfield, after he received a pass from Pendlebury. Once again Precious kicked the conversion.

Another South Africa score meant the visitors' lead was 20-10 at the half-time interval and five minutes into the second half the home side scored again.

But any hope of a comeback were thwarted when Hull ace Bower rounded the South African full-back to score behind the posts, with Baker this time converting.

South Africa went over once again to stay in touch, but in the last 20 minutes the Lions moved clear to make the scoreline look more comfortable.

On 60 minutes, Normanton Knights' Dave Dunwell went on a 30-metre sprint and at just the right moment passed inside to Wigan St Patricks' Anthony Atherton, who scored under the posts, which gave Baker the easiest of conversions.

Five minutes later quick hands along the Great Britain line of attack completely caught out the South African defence which gave winger Budd the opportunity to score in the corner.

In the dying seconds, Great Britain secured victory with their final try of the match.

A kick through by wing Walker was fumbled by the South African full-back and first to react was Anthony Atherton, who only had to ground the ball before converting himself.

Where next?


Match centre

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