Featherstone Rovers hit back from 12-10 down at half-time to pip Batley Bulldogs 18-12 in Sunday’s Kingstone Championship game at Big Fellas Stadium.
Just like this season’s clash at Mount Pleasant, which Rovers won 16-12, there was little to choose between the teams in a game that could have gone either way.
Tries by Miles Greenwood and Greg Johnson, plus two Tom Hemingway goals, gave Batley a two-point advantage at the break.
But Rovers got a crucial try two minutes into the second-half when Andy Ellis shot over from acting half to add to first-half touchdowns by Steve Crossley and Ian Hardman.
Liam Finn kicked his third goal with a 40-yard penalty nine minutes from time to seal a hard-earned win that kept Rovers just one point behind leaders Sheffield ahead of Thursday’s trip to Halifax.
Batley were left to rue several missed second-half chances as they slipped to a third successive defeat.
Before the game, Rovers announced that second-rower Tim Spears is the latest player to sign a contract for next season.
Featherstone Rovers: Hardman; Sharp, Hepworth, Worthington, Saxton; Kain, Finn; Crossley, Kaye, James, Lockwood, Spears, Dale. Subs: Ellis, Bussey, Bryan, Bostock.
Batley Bulldogs: Greenwood; Campbell, Walton, Bretherton, Johnson; Black, Hemingway; Smith, Flanagan, Fleming, Davies, L Walmsley, Leary. Subs: Mennell, Moore, Hirst, Rowe.