Super League: Leon Pryce inspires Catalan Dragons' win over Hull KR
Last Updated: 21/04/14 8:55pm
Elliott Whitehead: two tries for the Dragons
Elliott Whitehead and Michael Oldfield scored two tries apiece as Catalan Dragons maintained their recent impressive form with a 37-24 victory over KR.
Catalans won their fourth consecutive game in league and cup as they continued to rebuild their season after a shaky start.
Hull KR failed to back up their derby victory against Hull FC on Thursday and it turned into a nightmare trip to the south of France for Rovers as prop Justin Poore was taken from the field with a serious-looking knee injury.
To Rovers' credit they were competitive throughout, battling back from 16-0 down early on to lead 18-16 at the half, but ultimately they were undone by a Catalan side inspired by a vintage display from veteran former England star Leon Pryce.
Catalans opened the scoring after four minutes, Zeb Taia latching onto Pryce's offload before releasing Morgan Escare to race 50 metres to score underneath the posts. Thomas Bosc added the conversion to give the hosts an early six-point lead.
Catalans doubled that lead nine minutes later as Pryce took on the Hull KR line and offloaded, with the ball knocked by the Hull KR defenders and kicked forward by Whitehead who chased and won the race to touch down. Bosc added the conversion.
Bosc created the third Catalan try, capitalising on disarray in the Hull KR defence after the injured Poore had departed.
On the next play, Bosc kicked to the right corner and the bounce took the ball away from Omari Caro and straight into Oldfield's hands, and the Catalan winger touched down to score in the right corner.
Hull KR came back into the game, Travis Burns attacking the Catalan defence before offloading to the supporting Greg Eden who dummied and raced over to register the first Rovers try of the night. Burns added the conversion.
Rovers were next to score as Jordan Cox pounced on Lopini Paea's error as the ball bobbled into the in-goal area and Cox pounced to touch down to score to the right of the posts with Burns adding the simple conversion.
Hull KR took the lead two minutes before the interval. A free-flowing move saw the ball go through five sets of hands and reach Caro, and the former London winger touched down in the left corner. Burns added the touchline conversion to send the sides to the interval with Rovers 18-16 in front.
After the break both sides traded tries, Daryl Millard sneaking in at the corner for Catalans after good work by Pryce and Escare. Burns sent in Caro for his second of the night in the corner for Rovers. Both Bosc and Burns added conversions.
Catalans seemed to have a little more left in the tank than their opponents as they dominated the battle between the forwards.
Pryce then created havoc in the Hull KR defence before Bosc and Ben Pomeroy sent in Oldfield for his second of the night to see the Catalans regain the lead at 26-24.
On the hour mark, Whitehead added his second try, out-jumping Caro to take the ball and go over from Pryce's kick. Bosc added the conversion to give the Catalans an eight-point cushion.
Two further penalties by Bosc gave the home side an unassailable lead before he added a drop goal in the final minute to seal the home side's victory.