Rugby League: Rovers reach play-offs

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The Independent Online
A FIRST-HALF hat-trick from their centre, Danny Baker, set Featherstone Rovers on their way to a 58-4 win over Leigh last night that was not only big enough to lift them into the First Division play-offs, but also good enough to give them fourth place and a home draw next week, writes Dave Hadfield.

Featherstone needed to beat the bottom club in the division by 32 points to overtake Hunslet and 46 to squeeze ahead of next week's opponents, Swinton. That proved no problem.

In the other play-off match Hull KR will be at home to Dewsbury, while Wakefield Trinity, who were yesterday awarded the trophy for leading the league, have the week off.

St Helens head into the play-offs in fine shape after disposing of one of their main rivals at Knowsley Road yesterday. The home side extended their winning run to five games with a 36-6 defeat of Halifax.

Karle Hammond, making only his second start of the season in his favoured stand-off position, set up five of his side's six tries and landed two drop goals.

Wigan, the Super League leaders, were given a fright by the bottom club Huddersfield before securing a victory that takes them two points clear of Leeds. The Warriors trailed 8-0 and were only 20-10 ahead but they ran in 18 points in 10 minutes against a brave but tired side.