Penrith Rugby Club have had some poor away displays this season but the 87-39 defeat at Manchester really topped the lot as they were appalling in the first 40 minutes.

It’s hard to understand how a side can play for 80 minutes against a side as good as Carlisle and have their line crossed only twice to then, next time out, face a side as ordinary as Manchester and concede eight tries in 40 minutes.

At half-time, the home side led 59-8 with the match in the bag before the half-hour mark as they scored at will.

Manchester were certainly big and strong but they were also pedestrian, unfit and lacking any real pace. They were able to stay on their feet in contact and play the ball off, and this was a constant threat to Penrith who lacked the intensity to combat the host’s big men.

Manchester scored a try after three minutes following a penalty kicked to the corner before the visitors had a bit of possession and hit back with a Nathan Wooff penalty.

Penrith then conceded an interception try and penalty for offside, head on to the posts on the 22.

It went from bad to worse as they conceded four tries in 15 minutes to trail 45-3 on the half-hour mark.

They had a brief revival after the introduction of Ryan Johnson from the bench, making his first appearance of the season. 

He was heavily involved as the visitors got up a head of steam and got into the home 22.

They were awarded a penalty which was quickly taken by Bruce Spencer and, after a couple of drives, Craig Price forced his way over for a try. They then conceded a try after a pass was intercepted, and although they recovered to get the ball back, they threw another interception pass to gift the try.

On the stroke of half-time, two offloads out of contact by the home backs saw them trundle in for their eighth try.

The second half was rather better but Penrith conceded another try early on when the ball squirted out of a set scrum on their own line.

They then got on the scoresheet again when a poor clearance kick and chase allowed Olly May to show his pace and grab the try.

Ed Swale’s quick-thinking added another when he tapped and went from a penalty, exchanging passes with Mike Raine before going in under the posts. 

Manchester then scored another following a penalty kicked deep into the Penrith 22 and then scored two tries directly from the next two restarts.

The only thing left in the game for Penrith was to score another two tries for a bonus point, which they did.

Dan Richardson forced his way over, May added a second and James Reynolds went under the posts in the final play of the game to add some respectability.