Challenge Cup: Hull KR carve out impressive win against Castleford at at Craven Park
Ryan Hall among the tries as Hull KR gain sweet revenge over Castleford for last season's thrilling sixth-round defeat by reaching the semi-finals of this season's competition
Last Updated: 08/04/22 10:48pm
Hull KR became first team to secure their place in the Challenge Cup semi-finals after carving out an impressive 34-10 win over Castleford.
Loose forward Elliot Minchella scored two early tries - his first at Craven Park - to put Rovers into a 12-0 lead but in-form Castleford winger Greg Eden touched down twice before half-time to keep the tie in the balance.
There were only six points between the teams with 15 minutes left but Rovers finished the stronger side and late tries from Rowan Milnes, Sam Wood and Jordan Abdull finally ended their opponents' brave resistance and sent the hosts to Elland Road.
England winger Ryan Hall was also among the tries as Rovers gained sweet revenge for their 33-32 golden point extra-time defeat by Castleford in last season's sixth-round tie.
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It was the Minchella show for the first quarter as Rovers began at a fast pace.
The former Bradford loose forward twice got on the end of grubber kicks from starting half-back Milnes inside the first 21 minutes to touch down and Lachlan Coote, a Wembley winner with St Helens in 2021, kicked the first of his five goals.
Minchella might have had a hat-trick but video referee James Child ruled he lost the ball over the line after being put through a gap by hooker Matt Parcell.
Castleford, last year's Wembley runners-up, showed their threat when winger Bureta Faraimo broke out of his own half and kicked ahead for his centre Jake Mamo, who managed to palm the ball back into play only for the home side to force it dead.
The Tigers, who lost skipper Paul McShane for a time with a shoulder injury, looked particularly dangerous on their left flank where they twice found joy.
Eden took in second-rower Kenny Edwards' cut-out pass for his first try and grabbed another five minutes before the break courtesy of slick handling from full-back Gareth O'Brien and centre Jordan Turner.
They took the prolific Eden's try tally for the season to 10, and to 99 in 93 appearances for the club.
O'Brien succeeded with one of his touchline conversion attempts to cut the home side's lead to two points.
Hull KR suffered a blow early in the second half when stand-off Mikey Lewis succumbed to an ankle injury after failing to run it off but they dominated possession and field position throughout the third quarter.
Impressive hooker Parcell twice reached the line only to be held up each time but the pressure paid off on 55 minutes when Coote fired out a pass to the left wing where Hall scored his side's third try.
Turner was forced off with a wrist injury on the hour but the visitors still managed to get Eden into space, although he was unable to find a team-mate with the final pass.
The all-important score came on 65 minutes when Abdull's high kick bounced fortuitously into the arms of Milnes and, as the visitors tired, centre Wood handed off Edwards to scorch in for a try before Abdull rounded off the scoring with a 60-metre solo try.