Super League: Hull KR beat bottom-side Toulouse to boost play-off bid
Hull KR trailed 12-6 at half-time before rallying to beat Toulouse on Thursday night; Rowan Milnes scored a late try and kicked three conversions; Euro 2022 winner Georgia Stanway was in attendance to watch her boyfriend, Toulouse star Olly Ashall-Bott
By PA Sport
Last Updated: 05/08/22 12:31am
Rowan Milnes inspired a Hull KR second-half comeback to reignite his side's play-off hopes with a 22-16 win over bottom-side Toulouse in the Betfred Super League.
The half-back scored the decisive late try and kicked three conversions as Rovers fought back from a 12-6 half-time deficit to sink the visitors.
In an error-strewn match, Rovers forced the first mistake with four minutes gone and on the next set George King made his way deep into Toulouse territory, but the possession came to nothing.
The home side slowly began to dominate but were denied the first try with 10 minutes gone when Shaun Kenny-Dowall was adjudged to have grounded the ball just short of the try line.
A break by Jez Litten did result in the opening try as Elliot Minchella completed the next move from a short pass by Frankie Halton and Milnes then added a simple conversion for a 6-0 lead 15 minutes in.
Rovers thought they had a second shortly after, but a forward pass by Kenny-Dowall meant Will Tate's effort was chalked off.
Matty Russell got the visitors back into the game midway through the first half with a try wide on the left following a flowing crossfield move, and a fine kick by Chris Hankinson brought them level.
Minchella was denied a second try when referee Liam Moore ruled Tate's pass was forward before the loose forward crossed the line.
Tate's fly-hack close to his own line could not be gathered by Phoenix Laulu-Togaga'e and Dan Alvaro pounced for the visitors' second try, with Hankinson's conversion making it 12-6 to Toulouse at half-time.
Toulouse grabbed the all-important first try of the second half with five minutes gone as Latrell Schaumkel went in on the right as the home side cracked under heavy pressure to make it 16-6.
But after Lucas Albert kicked out on the full, Ethan Ryan gathered a grubber kick from Milnes to score as Rovers fought back to trail 16-10.
However, as the errors from both sides continued, Rovers did well to keep the ball alive and score their third try.
Halton was on hand to take a pass from Kenny-Dowall and score from close range. Milnes kicked his second goal to tie the match at 16-16 with seven minutes left.
Toulouse knocked on from the next play and Milnes put his side ahead for the first time since early in the game with the match-clinching try and his third conversion put Rovers 22-16 ahead.
Toulouse fought hard to find a way back into the game, but strong defending by the home side meant there was no way through.
'Kenny-Dowall was sensational, I'm proud of players'
Danny McGuire, interim Hull KR head coach: "I thought he [Kenny-Dowall] was sensational. He's tough, the injury he's had, a normal person is still on the sidelines.
"He put his hand up, every time we were looking around he put his hand up. He carries the team on his back at times. He goes out there and delivers on the field. That's the biggest plaudit.
"I think the overriding emotion is pride in the commitment to each other. Some of the stuff there is not pretty and some of the stuff we did with the ball and defensively is something we will look at. When you have got desire and you play for 80 minutes you end up coming out on top.
"What I asked [the players] when I was put in charge was to commit to each other. They've delivered that every training session and every game."
Toulouse coach Sylvain Houles: "[Hull KR] pushed us out and in the end they found the tries to beat us. We have been under pressure since the beginning [of the season].There are five games and as long as there is something to play for we will try."
Rock-bottom Toulouse are back in action against Warrington Wolves on Thursday, August 11 (8pm), with Hull KR hosting Leeds Rhinos a day later (8pm).