Rovers set to be top dogs for third year running after sharing spoils with Sheffield
FEATHERSTONE Rovers edged closer to lifting the Co-operative Championship League Leaders' Shield for the third successive season by drawing 28-28 with Sheffield Eagles at Don Valley Stadium tonight.
Rovers completed their away league campaign with an unbeaten record to move four points clear of second placed Halifax whose last two matches are at Leigh tomorrow night and at home to Batley.
Featherstone's final league game is against Keighley Cougars at Bigfellas Stadium on Sunday, September 2.
Andy Kain (pictured) grabbed three tries and his half-back partner Liam Finn, who has signed a one-year contract extension that will keep him at Featherstone until the end of the 2014 season, kicked four goals.
It took Finn's tally this year to 164 goals. He is just two short of beating Jamie Rooney's club record of 165 goals in a season set in 2002.
Rovers did well to survive an early Sheffield onslaught before they took a sixth minute lead when slick crossfield passing by Kain, Tim Spears and Sam Smeaton sent in Tangi Ropati for his eighth try in three appearances since he returned to action after a three-month lay-off with a broken jaw.
They increased their lead in the 16th minute when Finn's speculative kick was caught by Ropati who had fed Smeaton.
Smeaton burst clear before putting in an inch-perfect kick for Kain to touch down.
Featherstone continued to dominate, with half-backs Finn and Kain impressing with their superb kicking games.
They made it 16-0 when Finn's kick set up Kain's second try.
Sheffield cut the gap on the stroke of half-time when Dane McDonald's kick created a try for Michael Knowles that Dom Brambani goaled.
The Eagles snatched an 18-16 lead early in the second-half with two tries in three minutes from Scott Turner and James Davey, both goaled by Brambani.
Rovers regained the lead with a magnificent 53rd minute try.
James Lockwood slipped the ball to Tommy Saxton who supplied a great of-load to Ian Hardman who regathered his own well-judged kick to score a try that Finn improved.
Rovers struck again nine minutes later when Finn's high kick was caught by former The Sheffield player Ropati who sent Kain darting in for his third score.
The Eagles roared back to level the scores with two tries in four minutes from Quentin Laulu Togagae.
Finn and Brambani missed with a drop goal attempts in a frantic finish.
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Wednesday 19 June 2013
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