On this Day: 04.05
On this day …. 4 May
61 years ago today, on 4 May 1959, full-back Cyril Kellett kicked five goals in a 13-7 home win over Featherstone Rovers, to end the season with 142 goals, a new club record that he himself broke two years later.
52 years ago today, Rovers lost 17-10 to Wakefield at Headingley in the 1968 Championship final. The game came at the end of Rovers’ longest ever season, in which they played 49 matches. They had already played Wakefield six times that season, gaining three wins at Craven Park and three draws at Belle Vue.
In this, the most important encounter of the seven, it was not that Rovers played badly – it was an entertaining end-to-end game – it was just that Trinity had that extra bit of big match experience and luck when it mattered. Paul Longstaff’s try shortly before half-time saw the teams go in 5-5 at the break, but Trinity gradually took control in the second half and built up a 17-7 lead. Johnny Moore’s try late on was mere consolation for Rovers, but it capped a remarkable season for Moore, in which he played throughout all 49 matches, mainly in his favoured centre position, but also at full-back and stand-off half.
Rovers team that day was – David Wainwright; Chris Young, Alan Burwell, John Moore, Paul Longstaff; Roger Millward, Colin Cooper; Les Foster, Peter Flanagan, Brian Mennell, Phil Lowe, Terry Major, Frank Foster. Subs not used: Phil Coupland, Bill Holliday.
On 4th May 1975, the eight points scored by the Robins in an 18-8 Premiership semi-final defeat by Leeds at Headingley took them past 1,000 points for the season for the first time. Neil Fox’s second half conversion of Roger Millward’s try took him to a new club record of 333 points for the season.
12 years ago today, Rovers beat Hull FC for the second year running at the Magic Weekend in the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff. Hull FC dominated the opening stages, but all they had to show was Raynor’s unconverted try in the first minute. Rovers hit back midway through the half, firstly when Chev Walker sent Peter Fox in at the corner, and then when Dan Fitzhenry scored at the other side of the field from Stanly Gene’s pass. Raynor scored again two minutes from the break, and the sides went in level at 10-10.
Danny Washbrook scored another derby game try to put Hull back ahead after the restart, and Rovers levelled when Walker took Paul Cooke’s pass to score. Rovers started to dominate but could not find a way over, and Dykes’ 74th minute drop-goal looked to have won it for the Black & Whites. But just two minutes later, Jake Webster capitalised on good work by Ben Galea to score the winning try, and Cooke’s conversion added icing to the cake.
After narrowly avoiding relegation from Super League the previous season, the win meant that Rovers had earned 13 points from the first 13 games in 2008. It was the Robins’ first game after James Webster had been forced out through injury, and Scott Murrell deputised at scrum-half.
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