|Halifax (0) 6|
|Tries: Fairbank Goals: Jouffret|
|St Helens (16) 26|
|Tries: Lussick 2, Wingfield, Makinson, Welsby Goals: Makinson 3|
St Helens overcame Championship part-timers Halifax to reach the Challenge Cup quarter-finals for the sixth successive season.
Tries from Joey Lussick, Jake Wingfield and Tommy Makinson put the 13-time cup winners 16-0 up at the break.
The Super League and World Club Challenge title-holders added two more second-half tries to complete the win.
Jack Welsby’s score and a second from Lussick came before Jacob Fairbank grabbed a consolation for the hosts.
Saints ended the game a man down with Morgan Knowles shown a red card for a high hit on Tom Inman in the final minute.
James Roby, who a week earlier broke Saints’ all-time appearance record, was left out for the trip to The Shay.
The captain’s absence and suspension of prop Matty Lees were two of three changes to the side that started in their stunning come-from-behind Super League win against Salford.
The Panthers made as many changes to their squad, as they hosted Saints in their first meeting since the Super League giants laboured to a semi-final win against them in the 2019 competition.
Lussick went over early for the visitors but they were made to work hard for much of the first half, and it was not until the 25th minute that Wingfield got their second.
Makinson added the extras then quickly grabbed a try himself to put Saints in a commanding position at half-time.
It took a review from the television match official to deny the hosts a try in the last minute of the first half, with James Woodburn-Hall judged to be offside when James Saltonstall put up a kick that Paul Wellens’ side made a mess of defusing.
Welsby edged Saints further ahead early in the second half and Lussick completed his double before Fairbank pulled a late consolation try back for five-time Challenge Cup winners Halifax.
St Helens head coach Paul Wellens:
“I’m happy with the performance in the main – it’s always a bit tricky when you come to a Championship club because they have a lot of really good players so it’s always going to be a tough challenge.
“The fact that the world champions are in town is always a great opportunity for players to test themselves against us.
“I did think we left a couple of tries out there but there was a lot to be positive about and the important thing is we are in the hat for the next round.”
Halifax coach Simon Grix:
“We knew what we were up against before the game because they didn’t do us a favour and rest many of their players.
“We played against a very strong team and came out with our pride intact. We spoke about having a go and not succumbing to their line speed and pressure, and I think we can be proud of how we handled it.
“But for our skill at times and just being tired, we just missed a bit, and I thought there were a few points left out there from us. But it was a great occasion and I thought all the players really stepped up.”
Halifax: Woodburn-Hall, Walmsley, Tibbs, McComb, Saltonstall, Jouffret, Keyes, Fairbank, Gee, Lannon, Murray, Moore, Calcott.
Interchanges: Inman, Doro, Tangata, Larroyer
St Helens: Welsby, Makinson, Hopoate, Davies, Ritson, Lomax, Dodd, Walmsley, Lussick, Knowles, Mata’utia, Batchelor, Bell.
Interchanges: Bennison, Paasi, Wingfield, Delaney.
Sent off: Knowles (79).
Referee: Aaron Moore.