Featherstone 36 Toulouse 18: Fitness key as Rovers extend unbeaten run

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FEATHERSTONE recovered from 14-8 down early in the second-half to maintain their 100 per cent record in the Betfred Championship.

Their fitness again told in a strong finish like it did in their opening day victory over Halifax.

Winger Luke Briscoe bagged two tries, half-back Martyn Ridyard kicked six goals and impressive Mitch Clark scored his first try for the club as Rovers inflicted Toulouse’s first defeat.

Ridyard put Rovers ahead with a sixth-minute penalty goal.

The French side, who completed a league double over Featherstone last season, scored the opening try after 18 minutes when William Barthau and Robin made the opening for Paul Marcon to race over for the first of his two touchdowns and Mark Kheirallah converted.

Six minutes later, Toulouse substitute Tyla Hepi was sin-binned and Rovers soon capitalised on the extra man.

Briscoe dived in at the corner but was ruled out to have been in touch. The wingman made no mistake in the 30th minute when Tom Holmes sent him over to level the scores.

Ridyard edged Rovers back in front with a penalty but the game swung back Toulouse’s way when Barthau created a try for Rhys Curran and Marcon bagged his second try after great work by Kheirallah. Thackeray went in from Holmes’s pass to cut the gap to two points.

Featherstone then took control with two tries in two minutes, with Holmes putting in Clark and John Davies, with Ridyard adding both conversions.

They sealed victory 13 minutes from time when Josh Hardcastle scored from Thackeray’s pass.

Leeds Rhinos dual registered centre Ash Handley nearly scored from Ridyard’s kick before Briscoe darted in for his second.

Toulouse had the last word with a Gavin Marguerite try.