Thornley hat-trick as Wigan quell Robins’ challenge

In a Nutshell

Hull KR enjoyed a 14-20 half-time lead, but Wigan upped their game in the second half to score 20 unanswered points to win 34-20.

How it unfolded

Wigan took an eight-point lead within the first ten minutes, with tries by Iain Thornley and Matty Bowen, who ran 90 metres when taking a high ball 10 metres from his own line.

Matty Smith failed with both conversions, but things were already looking ominous for the Robins.

But the next ten minutes was a different story,  as Kris Keating created a superb try for Jamie Langley, and then Greg Eden created a score for Liam Salter, with Travis Burns converting the first to give them a two-point advantage.

And when Keating produced a perfect pass to put Kris Welham in near the corner, bor Burns to convert, the Robins were clearly in the driving seat at 8-16.

But on 30 minutes Thornley brought Wigan back into the game, showing smart footwork to score from 10 metres out, with Smith adding his first conversion.

Ben Cockayne restored a 6-point lead with a try in the corner, and on the stroke of half-time Wigan thought they had replied with a Josh Charnley try in the corner, but it was disallowed by the video referee for obstruction.

Hull KR had an early score by Graeme Horne disallowed in the second half, before Joe Burgess broke down the left to create a try for Liam Farrell. Smith’s goal levelled the scores.

Ben Flower gave Wigan the lead after 64 minutes, taking a great pass from Smith to score, and when Thornley added his third try, touching down a Blake Green grubber, the game was up for the Robins, who had contributed strongly to an entertaining encounter, but who are still searching for a win after five rounds of the competition.

A full report, pictures and analysis will appear in Monday’s edition of Rugby League Express.