The Hoops took a major step in securing European football next season by cementing third place with an impressive 4-1 win over Finn Harps at Tallaght Stadium.
With fourth-placed Derry City unbelievably beaten 5-0 at home to Bray Wanderers, Rovers capitalised on this most unlikely of results to move four points clear with just five games to go.
Gary Shaw opened the scoring in the first half and the Hoops pulled clear after the break thanks to a Brandon Miele free kick and a quick-fire double from substitute James Doona.
But Harps fell behind on 27 minutes when Gary Shaw turned home a cross from Cameron King.
The home side had several chances to add a second but had to wait until the 51st minute until they scored again when Brendan Miele fired home from a free kick.
King was again involved in the lead-up to Rovers’ third goal on 69 which was converted by James Doona who was on as a replacement for the injured Trevor Clarke.
The sub was on the scoresheet again five minutes later as he was found in the box by King’s replacement, Ryan Connolly, and he finished in style.
BJ Banda grabbed a late a consolation for Harps, the Donegal man finishing with style with two minutes to play, but it was too little too late for the visitors.
Shamrock Rovers: Tomer Chencinski; Simon Madden, Roberto Lopes, Lee Grace, Luke Byrne (Dean Carpenter 66); David McAllister, Ronan Finn, Cameron King (Ryan Connolly 70), Trevor Clarke (James Doona 61), Brandon Miele; Gary Shaw.
Finn Harps: Ciaran Gallagher; Tommy McBride, Damien McNulty, Shane Blaney, Mark Timlin; Gareth Harkin, Paddy McCourt, Jonny Bonner (Ibrahim Keita 59), Caolan McAleer (BJ Banda 81), Danny Morrissey (Liam Walsh); Eddie Dsane.
Referee: Robert Hennessy (Limerick).