YORK Knights boss Andrew Henderson was pleased with the contributions of debutants Davy Litten and Franklin Pele against Halifax Panthers.

The pair - who arrived on initial two-week loans from Betfred Super League strugglers Hull FC earlier in the week - were thrust straight into action as the Knights moved out of the Betfred Championship relegation zone with a dominant 40-18 victory in the North Yorkshire sunshine.

Litten replaced the suspended Will Dagger to start at full-back, whilst Pele played over half of the match after being introduced from the bench in two separate stints.

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Halifax, whose injury problems were not helped by the losses of both Louis Jouffret and James Woodburn-Hall during their defeat, were under the cosh from the off, with AJ Towse, Ukuma Ta’ai and Josh Daley seeing the Knights race into a 16-point lead.

But though Adam Tangata pulled six points back for the visitors on the stroke of half time, the Knights crucially nudged themselves further ahead through Joe Brown’s length of the field effort before Litten reacted quickest to touch down into the corner after a mistake from James Saltonstall and Daley crashed over for his second.

There were perhaps some nervous moments from the young full-back, not least when his hesitancy from a grubber allowed Ed Barber to see Halifax again hit back with 15 minutes left to play, but the Panthers’ late comeback was in vein as Jimmy Keinhorst added icing to the Knights’ cake in the dying minutes.

York Press: Litten marked his debut with a try shortly after half time.Litten marked his debut with a try shortly after half time. (Image: Alan Milner/Milner Creative/York RLFC)

Pele may well be the answer – at least in the short-term – to York’s seeming lack of a powerful forward after Pauli Pauli’s departure to Championship rivals Doncaster, for he had no problems in drawing them upfield during a long stint at prop.

Henderson admitted: “I thought they both contributed well for us to be honest, to say that they’ve had two sessions since they’ve come in and they’ve come in from a side a bit low in confidence.

“I thought Davy Litten brought some tremendous energy and intent in his actions at training and I thought that we saw that today. He competed hard and was scrambling for everything.

“Yes, there were a couple of bits there that might have been a little bit clunky for him, but that was to be expected.

“I didn’t put any pressure on him to be where we needed him to be, we just needed to see some energy, some intent and some effort-based stuff from him, which I thought we got in abundance.

“Franklin, for me, was just to be able to give us that point of difference off the bench, which I felt he did.

“He came on, he took some energy out of that Halifax pack with his go-forward and I thought he acquitted himself really well.

“Both of them had some pleasing performances.”