Rovers hit back in best possible way

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Featherstone bounced back from the Northern Rail Final defeat to ensure injury-ravaged York City Knights crashed to yet another defeat.

In a 40-12 victory, Rovers winger Tangi Ropati was on the scoreboard after only three minutes following a powerplay on sixth tackle and the territorial advantage paid further dividends as Sam Smeaton collected Liam Finn’s subtle kick to increase the lead.

York hit back with full-back Tom Bush changing direction to touch down under the posts. But two tries from successive sets as Dom Maloney and Nathan Chappell scored, increased Featherstone’s lead to 18 points at the break.

An early, powerful 40-metre break from Chappell split the Knights defence wide open for Ropati to score his second try in the corner to confirm Rovers dominance which was exemplified minutes later.

Chappell again simply proved too powerful steaming over the try-line from 40-metres after brushing off attempted tackles and again Liam Finn goaled on his way to six successes from seven kicks.

Rhys Clarke had filled in the stand-off berth for the Knights that has so many tenants this year and a positive performance ended in a try as he was on the end of arguably York’s best play of the evening with Matt Garside, Bush and Jack Lee involved before Clarke touched down.

But this was mere consolation as Rovers finished on a deserved high with Kyle Briggs superbly collecting a quality kick from Finn to score the final try and ensure a 28-point victory.

York City Knights: Bush, Pryce, Elliot, Garside, Dent, Clarke, Thorman, Sullivan, Lee, Aldous, Davies, Estosito, Freer. Substitutes: Brining, Sutton, Toutney, Stubbs.

Featherstone Rovers: Hardman, Saxton, Smeaton, Worthington, Ropati, Briggs, Finn, England, Kaye, Dickens, Bostock, Spears, Dale. Substitutes: Bussey, Lockwood, Chappel, Maloney.

Referee: Gareth Hewer (Whitehaven).