Halifax’s former Featherstone prop Tony Tonks has said the Championship leaders simply paid the price for not being at their absolute best at Post Office Road on Sunday.
Tonks, a key member of Rovers’ table-topping sides in 2010 and 2011, is more aware than anyone of what it takes to beat Daryl Powell’s three-time Grand Finalists on home soil.
And after Karl Harrison’s side, who host Barrow on Sunday (3.0) saw their unbeaten start to the year scuppered by a 40-18 loss, Tonks was in no mood to make excuses.
“You can’t go there and win without being on top of your game, and we weren’t,” he said, after Rovers overturned a 12-10 interval deficit to run out easy winners.
“We thought we’d played our worst rugby in the first half; everything we did was pretty hectic.
“We didn’t get a grip of the game like we have done over the last four or five weeks.
“We sat down and thought we had a good chance in the second half to put some points in but it wasn’t to be.
“They were under pressure, they’d lost two games and I think if they’d lost again they would have been looking at themselves and thinking ‘can we compete for that top spot’.
“After Sunday, they know they can which is no surprise because they are a quality side.
“The good thing is that they have to come to our place and that you don’t win or lose anything in April.
“For us, it’s a case of dust down and push on now.”