Friday 22nd June 2012, 20:00 - Round:18
Hull Kingston Rovers
|Jake Webster, Scott Murrell,||T||Setaimata Sa, Clint Greenshields,|
Scott Dureau 2,
Attendance: 7,142 Official: R Silverwood Venue: MS3 Craven Park
Catalan Dragons strengthened their grip on third place in Stobart Super League with a narrow win over Hull KR at MS3 Craven Park.
It extended the French side’s run over the Robins to four games and saw them return to winning ways after successive defeats to Salford City Reds and Wigan Warriors.
Trent Robinson labelled his side’s performance against the Reds as disgraceful, but he would have been pleased with their overall display in east Hull.
Few sides have kept the Dragons to 20 points or less, but Rovers have done it twice this season. However, a third time was asking a little too much.
The last time the Dragons visited Craven Park in April, they were outscored by four tries to three but escaped with a Carnegie Challenge Cup victory thanks to a rare off-day by Rovers goalkicker Michael Dobson.
Tonight they had Scott Dureau on form with the boot with a superb drop goal and penalty at the death to secure the win.
Rovers were dealt an injury blow just five minutes into the game when Kris Welham was stretchered off with a serious leg injury after slipping unchallenged on the wet turf.
After a cagey start by both sides, it was the Dragons that broke the deadlock. Video referee Ian Smith found no fault with Daryl Millard’s high leap and knock back for Clint Greenshields, who in turn sent Setaimata Sa over for the score.
Dureau, whose kick caused the confusion in the first place, missed the conversion but Catalan led 4-0 after 17 minutes.
Rovers’ response was impressive and prompt. It seemed Jake Webster had little room to ground Blake Green’s kick but that’s exactly what he did to level the scores, and Dobson’s conversion gave the home side a 6-4 advantage after 20 minutes.
Chances were few and far between after that as the defences came to the fore close to the respective try lines.
Ben Galea and Dobson twice squandered try-scoring opportunities before the end of the first half.
Just before the hooter sounded Dureau attempted a 40-metre drop goal, but the connection was not as good as he would have liked and it had neither the height nor direction to trouble the scorers.
The Dragons nearly went behind at the start of the second half when Graeme Horne went over. However, video referee Smith ruled out his try for a knock-on over the line.
Craig Hall could also have scored but an unfortunate knock-on when the ball bounced up and hit his hand ruled the play dead.
Dureau equalised for the Dragons with a 55th-minute penalty, but the sides did not stay on level terms for long.
Five minutes later, Scott Murrell found himself on the left wing to ground Lincoln Withers’ inch-perfect kick through.
Dobson was off target with the conversion, and Rovers' 10-6 lead was wiped out when Greenshields scored an unconverted try to level matters with five minutes to go before Dureau dropped a goal three minutes later to put Catalan ahead once more.
A Dureau penalty after the hooter added gloss to the score for the French side.