Hull KR lose late on as Wigan Warriors kick last-gasp drop goal to win
Hull Kingston Rovers suffered a heartbreaking 19-18 Betfred Super League defeat to Wigan Warriors at KCOM Craven Park.
See the match report below.
Hull KR welcomed back captain Joel Tomkins from suspension to start against his former club and Will Dagger from injury, but were without Mitch Garbutt and a host of other players including Danny McGuire, who sustained a calf issue in the captain’s run.
Wigan had Liam Farrell back for his first outing since the World Club Challenge, recovering from a torn pectoral injury.
Hull KR: Craig Hall, Ben Crooks, Jimmy Keinhorst, Kane Linnett, Ryan Shaw, Josh Drinkwater, Will Dagger, Owen Harrison, Danny Addy, Mose Masoe, Joel Tomkins, Weller Hauraki, George Lawler. SUBS: Chris Atkin, Antoni Maria, Ryan Lannon, Robbie Mulhern.
Wigan Warriors: Zak Hardaker, Liam Marshall, Dan Sarginson, Oliver Gildart, Joe Burgess, George Williams, Thomas Leuluai, Ben Flower, Sam Powell, Tony Clubb, Willie Isa, Liam Farrell, Sean O’Loughlin. SUBS: Joe Bullock, Jake Shorrocks, Morgan Smithies, Taulima Tautai.
The Warriors blew an early chance on five minutes. After great work down the right through Dan Sarginson and Liam Marshall, the former’s pass back inside is spilled by Thomas Leuluai and Rovers survived.
But the visitors opened the scoring through George Williams, who collected Joe Burgess’ dubious-looking pass for 6-0, with Zak Hardaker converting from the touchline. Wigan forward Ben Flower hobbled off for the hosts shortly afterwards.
Rovers, who then lost Danny Addy to injury, replied just before the 20-minute mark after Jimmy Keinhorst intercepted a Wigan pass to race 90m, shrugging off would-be defenders, and Ryan Shaw converted to tie the scores at six apiece.
George Lawler saw a try disallowed despite grounding possession from Josh Drinkwater’s kick – however the ball was out of the in-goal area.
Wigan went up the other end a couple of minutes later and good handling from left to right saw Sarginson stroll over to put them in front. Williams this time on kicking duties missed the extras for 10-6 just three minutes before the break.
A killer blow was dealt before half-time as Joe Burgess scored on the hooter to extend Wigan’s lead to 14-6 at the interval, Williams missing his second of the day.
Half time: Hull KR 6 Wigan Warriors 14
Rovers forced the error from Oliver Gildart shortly after the restart and superb hands from Will Dagger, who passed to Joel Tomkins then Craig Hall to then receive possession himself, saw him glide under the sticks. Shaw converted for a 14-12 ball game in favour of Wigan, who were without Hardaker for the second half.
It got better for the Robins when taking the lead for the first time on 55 minutes. Ryan Lannon crossed for his first of the year from close range and Shaw converted from bang in front for 18-14.
Kane Linnett’s afternoon was over on 58 minutes when stretchered off due to a head injury, following a try-saving tackle on Sarginson.
Marshall equalled the scores with a try in the right corner on 66 minutes, but Williams couldn’t convert again as it was tied 18 apiece.
Craig Hall saw a try disallowed after getting his fingertips to a high kick, following a Wigan error, in the last ten minutes.
And it was Sam Powell’s drop-goal just 100 seconds from full-time which secured the slimmest of wins for Wigan with an 19-18 success. Drinkwater’s attempt sailed wide on the hooter as Rovers lost by the slimmest of margins.
Full time: Hull KR 18 Wigan Warriors 19
HULL KR 18
T: Keinhorst, Dagger, Lannon
G: Shaw 3/3
WIGAN WARRIORS 19
T: Williams, Sarginson, Burgess, Marshall
G: Hardaker 1/1, Williams 0/3
DG: Powell 1
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