JAMES FORD hailed prop Pauli Pauli as the game-turner in York City Knights’ come-from-behind 34-14 victory at Sheffield Eagles.

Trailing 14-12 at the break, Pauli assisted a try before scoring one himself early in the second half to tilt the match in York’s favour.

The Knights capitalised on the momentum created by the former Betfred Super League and NRL star to win the second half 22-0 and return to winning ways in the Betfred Championship, moving back up to third in the process.

“I think the game turned around Pauli’s physicality,” said Ford. “In the second half, he fractured the line and he was leaving bodies on the floor and he got some good offloads away which created opportunities for us.

“I think that the game turned around that."

The head coach added of twice second-half try-scorer Marcus Stock: “When we brought Stocky on against some tired legs, he did what he does. He’s got good leg speed and he gets between people.

“He turned the screw and finished things off for us.

"He’s a real handful is Stocky and I was really pleased with what he did.”

Although they came away with the points in the end, Ford did not hide his frustration with his team’s first-half showing.

“We were challenged and we faced some significant challenges from Sheffield, they really came after us,” he said.

“They put us under a fair bit of pressure in that first half and defended well.

“We didn’t respond to that, we didn’t come and meet them in terms of that intensity.

“I was really disappointed with the first half and some of the defensive things we did and how we carried the ball.

“It wasn’t anywhere near the levels that we expect or the levels that we’ve consistently achieved this season.

“In the second half, we rolled Sheffield and we played through them.

“The second half was much better. We ran harder, we tackled harder, we turned and chased and fought for stuff and we won it 22-0.”