Super League: Kevin Brown's double helped Widnes overcome Bradford
Last Updated: 30/03/14 5:49pm
Stand-off Kevin Brown scored a first-half brace to help Widnes to a tight 22-18 success over plucky Bradford at the Select Security Stadium.
Brown's double and another from Jack Owens gave the Vikings a 16-6 lead at the break and a platform to build on in the second half.
They did not have it their own way after the break, however, as Bradford defied their off-field problems to produce a spirited comeback that might have seen them take something from the match.
Elliot Kear and Brett Kearney added converted tries to Liam Sutcliffe's score just before half-time to edge the Bulls back.
But Patrick Ah Van's try in between proved the difference as Widnes' impressive start to the season continued.
Bradford may have left Halton with nothing, but at least have some hope for the future after Marc Green secured ownership of the club this week.
Green, who was watching the game in the boxes at Widnes, would have been pleased with the desire and effort of his side.
Led by Luke Gale, Chev Walker and Manase Manuokafoa, the Bulls put the Vikings under some considerable pressure.
The Vikings got their account ticking over on 14 minutes as Tom Gilmore sent in Owens for a neatly worked try. Danny Tickle hit the post with the conversion but was on target with his next effort after Brown had put the ball under the posts with a superb solo score out of nothing.
Brown, who is in a rich vein of form for the Vikings in both attack and defence, added another to his ever increasing total of Super League tries as he ghosted in for a walkover try five minutes from the break.
Owens should have put the Vikings further in front seconds later as his sweeping run had the Bulls defenders all at sea but his offload to substitute Paul Johnson was coughed up with the try line at his feet.
Bradford, who had defended gamely in the first period, got some reward for their effort with a nice try from half-back Sutcliffe to give them some encouragement before the second period.
The Bulls started the better of the two sides after the restart and Luke Gale's pinpoint cross-field kick was collected by Kear to put them right back in it at 16-12.
Francis Cummins' side threw everything at Widnes as they looked to nip ahead but Owens set up Ah Van with a dribbling grubber kick to give the Vikings some breathing space.
Tickle's conversion making it 22-12 but it was far from comfortable for Widnes.
With 14 minutes remaining Kearney's weaving run saw him end up over the try line. Gale tagged on the extras to put them within four points.
The Bulls could have snatched it at the death as Gale sent Adrian Purtell through but Paddy Flynn made sure with a solid shot that man the Vikings could run the clock down.
First Utility Super League
Tue 30th Jun
Hull K R34 - 28Salford Red Devils
Wed 1st Jul
Wakefield Wildcats26 - 16Hull FC
Thu 2nd Jul
Warrington Wolves17 - 6Wigan Warriors
Fri 3rd Jul
Leeds Rhinos46 - 18St Helens
Sun 5th Jul
Huddersfield Giants32 - 14Hull K R
Hull FC31 - 24Wakefield Wildcats
Salford Red Devils18 - 14Catalans Dragons
Castleford Tigers34 - 20Widnes Vikings
Thu 9th Jul
Wigan WarriorsvsLeeds Rhinos
Fri 10th Jul
St HelensvsHuddersfield Giants
Sun 12th Jul
Hull FC0 - 0Castleford Tigers
Salford Red Devils0 - 0Hull K R
Wakefield Wildcats0 - 0Warrington Wolves
Widnes Vikings0 - 0Catalans Dragons
Thu 16th Jul
Warrington WolvesvsSt Helens
Fri 17th Jul
Hull K RvsHull FC
Leeds Rhinos0 - 0Salford Red Devils
Wigan Warriors0 - 0Widnes Vikings
Sat 18th Jul
Catalans DragonsvsHuddersfield Giants
Sun 19th Jul
Wakefield Wildcats0 - 0Castleford Tigers
Thu 23rd Jul
Hull FCvsWigan Warriors
Fri 24th Jul
St Helens0 - 0Hull K R
Sun 26th Jul
Huddersfield Giants0 - 0Wakefield Wildcats
Leeds Rhinos0 - 0Catalans Dragons
Widnes Vikings0 - 0Salford Red Devils
Castleford Tigers0 - 0Warrington Wolves
Super League 2014, round seven
Bradford coach Francis Cummins refused to blame another week of off-field headlines for his side's defeat at Widnes
Paul Anderson admitted his side only have themselves to blame after blowing a 14-4 lead to lose 33-14 to Warrington.
Hull KR won successive Super League games for the first time since July with a commanding 44-6 victory over Wakefield.
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