Rugby League – Wolves win again

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The Wolves emerged from a scoreless first quarter to dominate the final hour, with centre Joel Monaghan scoring two of their six tries in a 34-4 triumph at the KC Lightstream Stadium.


Warrington coach Tony Smith gave a debut to Joe Philbin in the absence of five of their first-choice forwards, as well as playmakers Michael Monaghan and Richie Myler, and will be delighted with the performance of his patched-up side.


Rovers, also lacking a host of senior players, were arguably the better team in the opening stages, with impressive prop Michael Weyman forcing his way to the tryline before being held up and then nearly getting loose forward Neville Costigan over.


But Warrington gradually began to get on top, with England prop Chris Hill laying a solid platform for Chris Bridge and Stefan Ratchford to work their magic.


The home side were forced to scramble after Monaghan intercepted Kris Keating’s pass and loose forward Ben Harrison and centre Ryan Atkins were both turned onto their back after reaching the line.


The Hull KR defence finally cracked on 29 minutes when right winger Gene Ormsby went over for the first of three tries in an ultimately-decisive nine-minute spell.


A break from inside his own half by second rower Simon Grix got Ratchford over and Bridge’s offload set up an easy try for Monaghan.


Bridge kicked all three conversions, two of them from wide out, to make it 18-0 and Rovers were glad to hear the half-time whistle which gave them a chance to re-group.


Had winger Ade Gardner been able to get a touch to Travis Burns’ grubber kick early in the second half, a fightback might have been on but the chance was lost.


The Robins clearly benefited from coach Craig Sandercock’s interval pep talk and they pulled a try back on 57 minutes, second rower Graeme Horne taking Burns’ pass and stretching out of full-back Matty Russell’s tackle to touch down.


That gave the home side the confidence to produce their best spell of the game and full-back Greg Edenwent close after more clever work from the busy Burns.


But the Wolves were always dangerous on the counter-attack and they clinched the win on 68 minutes when prop Ben Evans swooped on a handling error by Eden and galloped 30 metres to double his try tally for the season.


Atkins then went over from close range after Rhys Evans had been brought down just short and Monaghan pounced on another loose ball to grab his second try, with Bridge taking his goal tally to five from six attempts.

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