Hat-trick hero Ollie Wilkes was delighted to have played a starring role as his side ran out 31-28 winners at Hunslet with just 14 players.

The skipper went over three times in the 1895 Cup tie on Saturday as Town triumphed for new boss Chris Thorman in his first game in charge.

Wilkes, who turned 39 on Thursday, said he was proud to have been part of the gritty victory and praised the attitude of his team-mates to put in big shifts over 80 minutes.

“The team performance was one of the best I’ve been involved with because of the attitude and commitment,” he said.

“We were under the cosh from the start.

“It’s happening too often in rugby league, teams having to go out with less than 17 players, but hopefully that’s the last time it’ll happen at Workington.

“It’s something we needed and the lads definitely gave their all so I was proud to be part of that.

“I think Hunslet were a bit complacent and when they saw we were coming with 14 players they thought they’d blow us away.

“It was an amazing performance from the guys and I can’t credit them enough.”

Wilkes’ three tries came as part of a battling display from Town in difficult circumstances but the experienced prop brushed off the praise for his heroics.

“I was just in the right place at the right time,” he said.

“I pushed through the line because you never know, you might end up on the end of a break from one of the half-backs and that’s pretty much what happened for two of them.

“The other one was a fortunate bounce of the ball.

“It’s only the second one I’ve scored so I was over the moon and delighted with that.”

Town will travel to face Leigh Centurions in the second round of the cup.