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On The Pitch

Improved defensive performance needed for victory, says Horne

Graeme Horne says Hull KR must produce a better defensive performance when they face Catalans Dragons tomorrow evening.

Rovers come up against Laurent Frayssinous’ men on the back of a 50-30 Challenge Cup victory over Bradford Bulls and will be looking to pick up their fifth win in six games.

A stunning second-half comeback saw the Robins defeat Catalans in the reverse fixture last month, but Horne maintains there is improvements to be made if they are to pick up two points in the South of France. 

“We’ve done well with the attacking side of our game so far this season,” Horne told, “it has been our defence that we need to work on.

“Our defence has been pretty poor over the last two weeks. Over the Easter weekend we made big improvements but it has gone a little bit backwards.

“It could be to do with the players we’ve had out through injury. We have been a bit light in the middle but we don’t make excuses.

“We still have to make our tackles. You wouldn’t be a Super League player if you couldn’t tackle and now we need to get it right.”

Rovers scored 46 unanswered points to overturn Catalans at the KC Lightstream Stadium in March, with Ken Sio scoring a hat-trick of tries in one of the Robins’ best performances of the season.

Horne insists they must show the same determination in attack and defence at the Stade Gilbert Brutus as they did in the second-half of the home game.

He said: “We defended better and had more confidence and belief in our own ability.

“We completed our sets and that is how we took them down. We have to make sure we do that again.

“It will be a tough game, as it always is when you go down there.

“It’s a great weekend for the fans and one I really enjoy.

“If you look at the table this is a crucial part of the season for us. It’s pretty bunched from fourth down to eleventh and a couple of wins can put you in a good position. We need to make sure we perform.”

Photo: Improved defensive performance needed for victory, says Horne