Featherstone: Blackmore’s brace puts Rovers on the road to the sixth round

Ben Blackmore
Ben Blackmore
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FEATHERSTONE ROVERS’ class showed as they saw off a dogged Crusaders side to secure their progression through to the fifth round of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup.

The Championship side didn’t have it easy as, at 16-12, Crusaders nearly took the lead for the first time and looked to be coming more and more in to the game.

But Rovers took control in the last 20 minutes and the final scoreline had a more comprehensive look to it than perhaps the Crusaders deserved.

Early tries from half-back Gareth Moore and hooker Andy Ellis opened up a 10-point advantage for Rovers, but Crusaders hit back with a score through Jamie Dallimore.

Featherstone had plenty of possession for the remainder of the first-half, but they only managed to cross for one further try through Will Sharp before the break.

Crusaders started the second period the better of the two sides and within minutes, they closed the gap as home full-back Tommy Johnson went over for their second try of the afternoon.

The hosts crossed over again shortly after, but Johnson’s effort was ruled out for offside from Dallimore’s grubber kick and that was the end of the Crusaders’ scoring.

Rovers made them pay as winger Ben Blackmore went down the other end of the field for a try, before efforts from Roy Maitua, Blackmore – his second – and Foster efforts gave the scoreline a more comprehensive look.

North Wales Crusaders: Johnson, Massam, Roets, Reardon, Mort, White, Dallimore, Burke, Wright, J Walker, Hobson, Wild, Middlehurst. Subs: C Ashall, Duffy, Joy, Davies.

Featherstone Rovers: Hitchcox, Blackmore, Hardman, Minns, Sharp, Sykes, Moore, Baldwinson, Ellis, James, Maitua, Foster, Spears. Subs: Marginet, Bostock, Bussey, Tonks.

Referee: Dave Merrick (RFL).

Attendance: 617.