KEIGHLEY Cougars came back from the dead to win 28-26 at Doncaster on Sunday and secure fourth spot in League 1, guaranteeing themselves a more favourable play-off path.

They will visit third-placed North Wales Crusaders this Saturday (6:30pm) in the qualifying play-off, but even if they lose, they will get a second chance against the winners of the elimination play-off, between Doncaster and Hunslet, the following weekend.

But there is another reason why Cougars head coach Rhys Lovegrove was thrilled to snatch fourth off Doncaster at the last.

He said: "It does have a psychological effect getting fourth instead of fifth, but it's less about the extra chance, and more about the fact we could now get a Grand Final at home.

"We knew we'd have to come through some tough games to get top four, which we have (Cougars have won five games in a row), and it will be hard from here too.

"North Wales are the best team in the division for me, just because of their consistency.

"Going away and trying to win there will be tough, but even if we do that, we have to win at Workington, another hard place to go, to get that Grand Final at home.

"But it's a great opportunity for us to go and do that now."

Keighley beat Saturday's hosts North Wales 34-14 two weeks ago, but that was at Cougar Park.

And Lovegrove said: "I don't think that North Wales win will have any bearing on the play-offs, as it's a different ground and a different competition.

"That's why you have a League Leaders' Shield and a Grand Final.

"Being away is a different animal too, so it's a game we have to look at in isolation.

"But we'll build upon the things we've had in place for the last few weeks and keep fighting to progress in the play-offs."

Cougars will be bouncing after beating 12-man Doncaster. They were 26-12 down with 13 minutes left, before Jake Webster, Taylor Prell and Phoenix Laulu-Togaga'e tries turned the game around.

Lovegrove said: "The most pleasing thing was we didn't chase it.

"Mo Agoro had a try disallowed while we were still two points behind, but we just kept going, stuck to a process, trusted it from minute one to 80, and it worked."

It was a rare game without a try for loose forward Brenden Santi on Sunday, but he was a key figure again, and he has just signed a new two-year deal with Cougars.

Lovegrove beamed: "Brenden brings quality, but also hard work and graft to the group.

"I feel a team's culture is the most important thing, which you see in how they play and the environment they create in training.

"We want the players to ask questions, challenge what we do, and develop.

"Brenden has been a big part of everything we've done on that front over the last eight months or so, so we're happy he's signed a new deal."