Gateshead Thunder 47-28 Oxford RLFC
Gateshead see off Oxford challenge
Gateshead's Kingstone Press Championship 1 campaign got off to a winning start courtesy of a 47-28 triumph against Oxford at the Gateshead International Stadium.
Joe Brown bagged a hat-trick of tries to lead the way for the Thunder, who trailed the visitors 14-13 at the break, while Carl Puckering converted five of his side's nine tries and also banked a drop goal.
Oxford, who beat London Skolars in last week's opening round, were lively throughout and notched five tries themselves - Sean Morris (two), Chris Clarke, Jordan Rice and Andrew Hoggins crossing the whitewash.
Jimmy Rowland was clinical with the boot for the visitors - slotting home four of five conversion attempts and Tony Benson's side could perhaps count themselves unfortunate that the margin of defeat was 19 points at the final whistle.