Rovers grind down London in second-half

Rovers lost Jack Ormondroyd in the warm-up with a back injury. Picture: Carol Austerberry.
Rovers lost Jack Ormondroyd in the warm-up with a back injury. Picture: Carol Austerberry.

Featherstone Rovers found their form in the second-half to beat London Broncos 20-10 in Sunday’s Championship Shield clash at Big Fellas Stadium.

When London led 4-0 at half-time, they looked as though they could be party-poopers after Featherstone’s two new stands were officially opened by the RFL’s chief executive Nigel Wood before the game.

However, Rovers took charge in the second period to run out comfortable winners and avenge a home defeat against the Broncos in April.

Featherstone suffered a blow when they lost Jack Ormondroyd in the warm-up with a back injury.

They then quicky fell behind when their former centre Ben Hellewell scored a well-worked try.

It proved the only score in a frustrating first-half for Rovers who dominated territorially but made very few clean breaks.

The Broncos wasted a gilt-edged chance to increase their lead early in the second period when Elliot Kear fumbled the ball as he was about to touch down.

Rovers made the most of the let-off by snatching a 51st minute lead when crisp handling by Andy Ellis, Cooke, Moore and Thomas Minns led to Will Sharp crossing and Sykes added a touchline goal to nudge them 6-4 ahead.

Rovers sealed their sixth win in seven matches by scoring three tries in a blistering eight minute spell.

Paul Cooke, Sykes and Ian Hardman set up a try for Ben Blackmore score Will Milner plunged over.

Cooke’s pass then sent in Jack Coventry for his firtst touchdown at senior level and Sykes converted to put Rovers 20-4 up.

London’s only reply came three minutes from time with a solo effort from Iliess Macani.

Featherstone Rovers: Hardman; Blackmore, Sykes, Minns, Sharp; Cooke, Moore; Baldwinson, Ellis, Coventry, Spears, Snitch, Bussey. Subs: Day, Milner, Cooper, Knowles-Tagg.

London Broncos: Morris; Williams, Hellewell, Kear, Macani; Pointer, Keyes; Riley, Cunningham; Dollapi, Harrison, Garside, Davis. Subs: Henderson, Adebiyi, Walker, Everett.

Referee: Chris Campbell (Widnes).

Attendance: 1,587.