Challenge Cup magic was again in full swing today as two sides went against the status quo to book their place in the Fourth Round of the competition in which Betfred Championship sides will enter the oldest tournament in rugby league.
A 22-8 win over York Acorn of the National Conference League at the Navy’s Portsmouth base saw the Royal Navy book their place in the Fourth Round. The Navy and the other Armed Forces teams have been competing in the Cup since 2000 but only the Army have previously made it this far in the tournament.
They’ll also be joined by Hunslet Club Parkside of the NCL who defeated London Skolars of the Betfred League One 28-6 this afternoon.
Credit should also be given to Lock Lane and Rochdale Mayfield both of the NCL who came up against semi-professional opposition. Lock Lane lost 28-12 to Rochdale Hornets led by 40-year-old hooker Sean Penkywicz booking a game against Barrow in the next round. Meanwhile, Mayfield lost to Doncaster who’ll meet Whitehaven in the next round.
As for the Navy and Hunslet Club Parkside, their triumphs see them meet former Challenge Cup winners in the Fourth Round. The Navy take on the first ever Challenge Cup winners Batley whilst Hunslet Club Parkside will take on Sheffield Eagles who famously shocked Wigan in the 1998 Challenge Cup Final.
Tomorrow Siddal of the NCL will look to join the Navy and Hunslet Club Parkside when they take on Hunslet in a match streamed live by BBC Sport in the afternoon. Swinton Lions will also meet North Wales Crusaders tomorrow as the Third Round draws to a close.
The Fourth Round takes place at the end of February from 26th to 28th.
Here’s the Third Round results so far:
Lock Lane 12 Rochdale Hornets 28
London Skolars 6 Hunslet Club Parkside 28
Rochdale Mayfield 0 Doncaster 20
Royal Navy 22 York Acorn 8