Huddersfield Giants secured their ninth win in ten games at the KC Lightstream Stadium tonight, holding on to beat Hull Kingston Rovers 22-26 in a thrilling match in front of 8,953 spectators.
The game was finely balanced, 16-16 at half-time, but the Giants pulled away to a ten-point lead in the second half before the Robins rallied and closed the gap with a minute remaining to four points.
The Robins were the first to score when Brett Ferres lost the ball and, although it appeared to have been stolen, referee Ben Thaler ruled a knock-on, and David Hodgson was over the line to give the Robinsa six-point lead with Travis Burns’ conversion.
The Giants soon drew level, however, with a try from Leroy Cudjoe converted by Danny Brough.
And it was tit for tat throughout the first half, with Kris Welham the next to score before Uluma Ta’ai equalised for the Giants, with both conversions being missed.
The Robins took the lead again when Ade Gardner scored following a high kick to the corner from Kris Keating, although Burns again failed to convert.
The Giants took the lead for the first time on 32 minutes, when Eorl Crabtree scored under the sticks from close range, sidestepping Greg Eden, and this time Brough added the goal.
But just before half-time Burns equalised for Hull KR as he kicked a penalty.
The second half was characterised by some controversial decisions, mainly affecting Hull KR, who had a try disallowed by David Hodgson for a questionable obstruction decision, although there was doubt about whether Hodgson had touched the ball down.
But the Giants swept downfield and Larne Patrick scored the first of his two tries when he followed up a Brough kick on 54 minutes, and he added a second after 67 minutes, again from a Brough assist, although this time with a pass, and Brough’s conversion gave the Giants a 10-point margin at 16-26.
David Hodgson knocked the ball on trying to score in the corner, before he did score his second try from a Keating kick. Burns converted from the touchline, but, despite a valiant effort to keep the ball alive, time ran out for the gallant Robins.
A full report and photographs for this game will feature in Monday’s edition of Rugby League Express.