|Wigan (0) 8|
|Tries: Gildart 2|
|Hull KR (6) 18|
|Tries: Crooks, Hall, Quinlan Goals: Crooks 3|
Hull Kingston Rovers ended their miserable run of form at Wigan with an impressive victory in Super League.
Ben Crooks’ converted try produced the only points of a low-scoring first half which saw Rovers 6-0 up.
Ryan Hall crossed to extend the lead after the break, but Oliver Gildart scored twice on his Wigan return to give the hosts hope.
However, missed goals meant Adam Quinlan’s late try was more than enough to seal it for Tony Smith’s side.
Rovers were tipped to be among the strugglers in 2021 but this, their sixth league win of the season, was enough to end a drought at the DW Stadium going back to 2009.
Even without mercurial half-back Jordan Abdull, the pairing of skilful back-rower Brad Takairangi and Mikey Lewis was able to cause Wigan problems.
Crooks was put in by a superb looping pass from Takairangi, while Hall tracked a peach of a cross-field kick from Lewis to soar for his score.
Gildart showed impressive pace on his return from a groin problem to score two fine tries, one of the few highlights for Warriors boss Adrian Lam, but Quinlan’s late finish, from another Lewis grubber, was the finishing touch for the visitors.
For Lam, a reshuffle which saw influential half-back Jackson Hastings forced to play at full-back, in the absence of Zak Hardaker and Bevan French, did not pay off.
However, the Cherry and Whites – who stay third – had plenty of experience elsewhere, but were overpowered by a relentless Rovers, who moved up to sixth.
Wigan coach Adrian Lam told BBC Radio Manchester:
“It was frustrating. We weren’t connected as a team from the start and we made too many mistakes.
“I thought there was effort there, there was no doubt about that, but when we had so many sets inside the 20-metre line, the Wigan team that we are would have posted points.
“I have to give credit to Hull’s defence obviously, but we were poor at that tonight and I’m really disappointed.”
Hull KR coach Tony Smith told BBC Radio Humberside:
“It was a good effort. It’s been backs-to-the-wall on and off the field. It’s been a tough week in terms of preparation but there was real character shown.
“I’m not sure how many teams come here and keep Wigan to nil at half-time. They had about 38 tackles in our quarter but we kept them out.
“That takes some character to do against a team with a whole host of representative players and us with not too many at all.
“The character shown, the positional play and the determination shown in defence was outstanding and repelled most of their attack. All credit to my boys.”
Wigan: Hastings; Bibby, Isa, Gildart, Marshall; Leuluai, Smith; Bullock, Powell, Singleton, Bateman, Farrell, Partington.
Interchanges: Byrne, Havard, Shorrocks, Pearce-Paul.
Hull KR: Quinlan; Crooks, Minikin, Kenny-Dowall, Hall; Takairangi, Lewis; Lawler, Parcell, Maher, Johnson, Linnett, Hadley.
Interchanges: Vete, Litten, King, Storton.
Sin-bin: King (31)
Referee: Robert Hicks (RFL)