Warrington Wolves’ homeward-bound Australian star Tyrone Roberts scored a try and kicked five goals in a 34-20 win at KCOM Craven Park on Friday night to condemn Hull KR to an end-of-season relegation battle.
Huddersfield’s surprise success at Castleford plus Warrington’s rollercoaster win lifted Steve Price’s side above the Tigers into third place in Super League, behind St Helens and Wigan.
Rovers battled from 6-0 and 12-8 down to lead 14-12 early in the second half, but Wolves made the game safe with four tries in the final half-hour.
Robins winger Elliot Wallis scored two tries in nine minutes, but the first half nevertheless belonged to the visitors.
England international Mike Cooper powered onto Daryl Clark’s flat pass to crash over after five minutes, and Roberts kicked the first of his five goals to make it 6-0.
Wallis, 18, endured a tough start to the contest, bundled into touch in one half and then trapped behind his own line as Warrington forced a drop-out. But he recovered superbly with two tries in quick succession to put Rovers in front.
His first came after a flowing cross-field move from corner post to corner post, and his second arrived via Tom Lineham’s fumbling of Danny McGuire’s bomb – an error by the former Hull FC winger which delighted the east Hull crowd.
Danny Tickle missed both conversions but the hosts still led 8-6.
Warrington’s bright start had suddenly been eclipsed but Roberts’s quick thinking and astute grubber kick edged them back in front.
Adam Quinlan was caught out of position and Roberts’s kick was followed up unopposed by Stefan Ratchford, who marked his 200th appearance for the club with a try.
Rovers lost talisman Shaun Lunt to a game-ending concussion after Roberts’s goal made it 12-8 in Warrington’s favour.
There was still plenty of fire left in Rovers and they were rewarded within two minutes of the resumption following a late shot on half-back Chris Atkin.
Running the penalty, Hull KR prop Robbie Mulhern bulldozed over and Tickle added his first extras of the night.
Back came Wolves with 10 points in four minutes, however, to take a two-score lead for the first time.
Clark’s second assist of the night, this time a trademark midfield scoot, allowed Roberts to race 20 metres for the touchdown.
Roberts added the goal before Toby King scythed through a gap close to the home line to make it 22-14.
Atkin’s try and Tickle’s second goal cut Warrington’s lead to two points, but there was no comeback as Kevin Brown and Dec Patton added further tries with Roberts booting two more goals.
Hull KR: Quinlan, Wallis, Blair, Vaivai, Oakes, McGuire, Atkin, Scruton, Lunt, Mulhern, Tickle, Greenwood, Clarkson. Substitutes: Masoe, Kavanagh, Jewitt, Salter.
Warrington: Ratchford, Lineham, M. Brown, T. King, Charnley, K. Brown, Roberts, Hill, Clark, Cooper, Livett, Hughes, G. King. Substitutes: Patton, Philbin, Pomeroy, Akauola.
Referee: Liam Moore (RFL).