Hull KR v Wigan Warriors: James Webster wary of Wigan threat to Rovers’ top-eight hopes

Hull Kingston Rovers head coach James Webster.
Hull Kingston Rovers head coach James Webster.
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HULL KR head coach James Webster has urged his squad to show longevity with their quality against Wigan Warriors tonight or they could face a painful result.

The Robins are in a positive mood after their 54-16 rout of Wakefield Trinity last Thursday, the sort of rich performance they hope will lift them to greater things still versus Shaun Wane’s side.

But Webster is only too aware of the threat Wigan pose and is mindful of the need for an 80 minute display.

“There’s going to be some parts of this game where we’ll be under the pump,” he said.

“Wigan are a top side and they can stretch you in all places.

“It’s an important game for them with their top-four and League Leaders’ Shield (ambitions).

“The spine of their team is outstanding and the full-back and two halves can cause damage.

“They’ve got so much strike in their side and we need to be good for long periods.

“If we win we’ll get closer to the eight and we have to make sure we do to stay in touch.”

A depleted Rovers side lost 30-16 at Wigan in the reverse fixture but did not have Terry Campese, Albert Kelly and Shaun Lunt available, the midfield creative trio who came together so brilliantly to cause in-form Wakefield so many issues.

“We played very well on Easter Monday,” recalled Webster, who has been boosted this week by news Australian Kelly will see out his contract in 2017 and not look for an NRL return.

“We were leading with 15, 20 minutes to go, and we went with three 17 year-old kids.

“It was a good performance without getting the result. We need to go one better Friday and get the win.”

Elsewhere, England forward Mike Cooper is to cut short his stay in the NRL to return to his hometown club Warrington.

Cooper, 27, left the Wolves to join St George Illawarra after playing in the 2013 Super League Grand Final against Wigan.

He was contracted to the end of 2017 but has been released on compassionate grounds and will rejoin his old club next season on a three-year deal.

Cooper has so far made 59 NRL appearances.