Warrington Wolves maintained their 100 per cent record in the Betfred Super League Super 8s Qualifiers after coming from behind to defeat a spirited London Broncos 40-38 at the Trailfinders Sports Ground.
Both sides scored seven tries and the Broncos had a 14-0 lead early on, but last year's Grand Final runners-up battled back and were able to hang onto the victory by the skin of their teeth after moving ahead.
Tries from Kieran Dixon, Rhys Williams and Jarrod Sammut put London ahead but the visitors hit back with 34 unanswered points to give themselves a sizeable advantage through tries from Tom Lineham, George King, Peta Hiku, Kevin Brown, Declan Patton and evergreen Ben Westwood, with half-back Patton kicking five goals.
But, the hosts responded with Sammut's second try, which he converted, to reduce the deficit to 34-20 before Brown grabbed his second score of the match with 15 minutes remaining to put the Wolves 38-20 ahead, with Patton adding the crucial extras.
Sammut completed his hat-trick, and also finished with five goals, with eight minutes left before Andy Ackers crossed and Dixon touched down for his second try to set up a tense final two minutes but the Wire held on to edge closer to retaining their Super League status.
Warrington boss Tony Smith believes his side's defence needs improving if they are to ensure their place in top-flight rugby league next season.
"We did some really good things with the ball at times and they did some really good things as well," he said.
"I thought our defence was poor overall and we have some work to do there. They were always going to be a handful on this ground, but to go up by 20 points and leak 18 is still disappointing.
"We were hoping to push our for/against difference out further, but we paid the price on that front because of our defence. We've got a little bit more work to do in this competition.
"We've got players playing through injuries and managing to get through and hopefully we can get them through to the end. The guys that are there are doing a good job, but they've had a tough year and it is nearly over now.
Not the best performance from us. We learn fast and go again. Thanks to all the traveling fans that traveled in numbers. Awesome @wolvesrl— George King (@georgeking9876) September 2, 2017
"We don't want to relax until the job is done, but we're doing what we need to at the moment. Some of it isn't pretty and some of it needs to improve and it will.
"All credit to the Broncos. I thought they played some terrific stuff and have done so all the way through the competition."
Broncos boss Andrew Henderson insists his team can still earn promotion, even if they have left themselves a lot to do to make the Million Pound Game.
He said: "The reality is for me is that I thought we started the game really well and had control.
"I want to compliment the players because they showed some good attacking prowess and strike and gave Warrington real problems.
"We know as a group in there that we need to be better for longer periods of the game.
"I still believe that if we win the next three games we'll be in that Million Pound Game and I believe we are good enough to do that.
"We've competed against arguably one of the bigger clubs in the Super League and I do believe that if we earn a place back in the Super League, we can offer something to that league competition.
"But again, we've got a lot of hard work to earn that in the next three weeks."