Super League: Catalans Dragons 32-24 Hull KR
|First Utility Super League|
|Catalans Dragons (16) 32|
|Tries: Baitieri, Springer, Oldfield, Pelissier, Garcia, Whitehead Goals: Bosc 4|
|Hull KR (12) 24|
|Tries: Blair, Cockayne, Dixon, Mantellato Goals: Mantellato 4|
Catalans Dragons lifted the pressure on coach Laurent Frayssinous with victory against a stubborn Hull KR side.
Back-to-back losses saw the Dragons slump out of Super League's top eight, but this third home win of the season puts them back in, ahead of Rovers.
Dragons' six tries came from Jason Baitieri, Gadwin Springer, Michael Oldfield, Eloi Pelissier, Ben Garcia and Elliott Whitehead.
Maurice Blair, Ben Cockayne, Kieran Dixon and Josh Mantellato replied.
The Dragons' 34-0 defeat at Wigan earlier this month led to Frayssinous meeting with chairman Bernard Guasch, and they came into the game on the back of a 38-14 defeat by Huddersfield last weekend.
Todd Carney's return at half-back was a lift for the hosts, although the subsequent loss of his halves partner Scott Dureau before kick-off forced a change of plans, with Thomas Bosc retaining his place.
Rovers' adventurous style made for an entertaining game in the south of France but they were unable to show the same devastating attacking threat they showed when dismantling Catalans 50-20 at home in mid-March.
There was a call-and-response nature to the scoring, with the two sides trading blows throughout.
Baitieri showed too much power for the Rovers defence early on when he bundled over, but Blair punished the Dragons' weak right-edge defence when he went in minutes later.
Mantellato drilled over a penalty goal for the Robins from 30 metres and then Ken Sio sucked in the last defender on a left to right move and fed Cockayne to crash over.
However, Catalans looked to have taken control when repeat penalties led to Springer battering his way over, and another error was punished by Oldfield wide on the right.
Extra breathing space was assured when Pelissier capitalised on three big carries from a drop out by Springer, Garcia and Bousquet to slip in from dummy half.
Rovers fought back, when Dixon's pace took him over on the back of good work from former Dracs back-rower Kevin Larroyer, although smart Garcia and Whitehead tries from close-in gave Catalans a cushion.
Mantellato's try was a mere consolation as Catalans gained revenge for their loss in east Hull earlier this season.
Catalans Dragons: Escare; Oldfield, Cardace, Pala, Yaha; Carney, Bosc; Elima, Henderson, Casty, Taia, Whitehead, Baitieri.
Replacements: Pelissier, Garcia, Bousquet, Springer.
Hull KR: Dixon; Mantellato, Sio, Blair, Cockayne; Kelly, Campese; Tilse, Boudebza, Walker, Horne, Larroyer, McCarthy.
Replacements: Burke, Green, Ollett, Esslemont.
Referee: Richard Silverwood (RFL).