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Rugby League

Eight-try Rovers turn on the style to revive their play-off chances

Hull KR 44 Wakefield Trinity 18

Hull Kingston Rovers turned on the style to keep their top-eight hopes alive and ease the pressure on coach Craig Sandercock with this win over Wakefield.

Rovers trailed 18-16 at half-time but ran in five unanswered tries after the break to claim a crucial victory that lifts them into the play-off spots.

"It is a little bit stressful, I can't lie to you," Sandercock said, "but I'm here to do a job."

Rovers began impressively, taking advantage of some careless play by Wakefield to open up a 12-0 lead thanks to tries from Graeme Horne (pictured) and Luke George.

The Wildcats edged in front by the break, courtesy of tries from Dean Collis, Ben Cockayne and Lee Smith, but Sandercock's men went on to dominate the rest of the game.

"We were disappointed with our first half. We gave away possession too cheaply. We wanted to make sure we completed our sets in the second half and we did that," Sandercock said. "Keeping them scoreless for the second half was probably the most pleasing part."

As Rovers got on top, loose forward Rhys Lovegrove powered his way over for two second-half tries but he was pipped for the man-of-the-match award by prop Mickey Paea, whose storming runs visibly lifted his side.

Wakefield missed the chance to leapfrog Rovers in the table and their coach Richard Agar admits the defeat dealt a blow to their play-off hopes.

"It's at the point in our season when we are still in touch but, if we keep putting in performances like that, our season could go one way," Agar said.

"Today was a good opportunity for us and we were nowhere near tough enough to win that game in the second half.

"We committed more knock-ons and unforced errors today than we have for a long time and it played a massive part in the game."

Sandercock, meanwhile, will seek permission from Huddersfield's coach Paul Anderson to retain the services of wingman George, whose month's loan ended yesterday.

"We have got a lot of players unavailable and it would be great if he could stay," Sandercock said.