Toulouse made the trip to East Yorkshire to take on Danny McGuire´s Hull KR side knowing that a win by four points or more would lift them off the bottom of the table, and throw the challenge back to Wakefield Trinity as the battle to avoid relegation continues.
But Hull KR also had their own points agenda. A thirty-point win would see them up to seventh in the table, putting pressure on their Black and White neighbours, but a loss would likely see them drift further from the play off places come the end of the weekend.
KR were given an eight-point handicap on the coupon, the bookies expecting them to condemn Toulouse Olympique XIII to their seventeenth loss of the season.
KR shunned the chance of a penalty on nine minutes after a high tackle from Joe Bretherton and ran the ball, but Shaun Kenny-Dowall was penalised for a double movement as he went for the line.
Three minutes after the failed attempt Elliot Minchella came onto a ball at speed to go through a big gap in the defensive line to cross for the opening try. Rowan Milnes added the conversion from close for 6-0.
Toulouse opened their account when Matty Russell found space wide down the left to take a fast pass and step past the last line of defence to score in the corner. Chris Hankinson kicked the touchline conversion to level the scores and silence the KR faithful.
On the half hour Toulouse were in the lead when Daniel Alvaro was on hand to collect a lucky rebound off a Corey Norman kick through and drop over the line. Hankinson added the conversion for 12-6.
Four consecutive sets on the KR line from Toulouse saw them extend their lead on forty-five minutes when Lattrell Schaumkel took the pass and rounded the defence to go over in the right corner. Hankinson was unable to convert but at 16-6 Toulouse were in the box seat.
A delightful kick from Milnes edged KR back into the game when it was collected by the chasing Ethan Ryan to force the ball onto the ground in the corner. Milnes was unable to add the extras, KR back within a converted try on fifty-five minutes.
It was Harlem Globetrotters stuff from KR in seventy-one as they kept the ball alive through multiple passes and offloads with Frankie Halton being on hand to take the final pass and go past two tacklers to score. Milnes added the extras, and the two sides were tied up again with six minutes remaining.
Three minutes later and the Robins were back in front with Milnes this time the scorer as he was the last man down the line from the back of the scrum to go over from twenty metres. Milnes added the conversion for a six-point advantage with three minutes remaining. Hull KR had snatched victory from the jaws on defeat in a determined turnaround.
For long periods of this game it looked like Toulouse would win their first away game of the season and lift themselves off the bottom but a dogged performance by the home side saw them fight back and pick up the points in the closing minutes to take a crucial two points and increase the Toulouse fears of relegation.
Hull KR: Laulu-Togaga´e, Ryan (T), Wood, Kenny-Dowall, Tate, Litten, Milnes (T, 3G), Sims, Parcell, King, Keinhorst, Halton (T), Minchella (T). Subs: Crooks, Storton, Maher, Fishwick.
Toulouse Olympique XIII: Ashall-Bott, Russell (T), Hankinson (2G), Jussaume (T), Schaumkel, Albert, Norman, Navarrete, Peats, Alvaro (T), Peyroux, Bretherton, Marion. Subs: Pelissier, Hansen, Belmas, Sangare.
Score Progression: 4-0, 6-0, 6-4, 6-6, 6-10, 6-12: HT : 6-16, 10-16, 14-16, 16-16, 20-16, 22-16: FT.
Lead Exchanges: KR – Square – Toulouse - Square - KR.
Referee: Liam Moore.