Huddersfield Giants 40-28 Hull KR
Hull KR’s season is in real danger of fizzling out after they went down 40-28 at Huddersfield Giants. Ian Watson’s side were on a poor run of form themselves but Rovers were their own worst enemies on their way to a third defeat in nine days. KR reporter James O’Brien delivers the verdict.
After a flat night at Craven Park last Thursday, Rovers had a spring in their step as they ran out at the John Smith’s Stadium. It was a dream afternoon for the Robins with Hull FC, Leeds Rhinos and Castleford Tigers all losing, putting Tony Smith’s side back in the play-off places before kick-off. But Rovers are low on confidence and it showed as things started to go against them, with the Giants preying on the visitors’ weaknesses.
The biggest issue for the Robins on Monday night was their right-edge defence as Huddersfield had a field day.
KR tried hard – as they always do – but they look like a spent force in the play-off race, even accounting for the shaky form of their rivals.Rovers picked up three more injuries to boot, losing George Lawler and Muizz Mustapha in the first half before Brad Takairangi went off in the closing stages.
The injury-hit Robins were boosted by the return of Rowan Milnes and Matty Storton but were staring down the barrel of another damaging defeat after a limp defensive effort on their own line in the first half.
The signs were there in the opening minutes as Oliver Russell made a half-break through KR’s weak right edge. Rovers actually opened the scoring on six minutes through Mikey Lewis, the youngster collecting a loose ball before powering his way over out wide. But Ben Crooks missed the conversion and Huddersfield were back in it with KR’s right edge already creaking.
It was a try Greg Minikin will not want to see again, with the winger missing Ricky Leutele along with Milnes before his fumble allowed Russell to touch down. Huddersfield crossed again soon after courtesy of more soft goal-line defence, Josh Jones crashing over following a weak effort by Milnes.
Crooks got Rovers going again with a strong kick return and the visitors thought they had their second try when Mustapha got to the line, only to be penalised for a double movement. But the Robins did not have to wait too much longer after Huddersfield failed to find touch, Kane Linnett going over from a crash ball.
Crooks was wide again from the tee and KR were down two interchanges after losing Lawler and Mustapha to injury. It got worse for Rovers as Huddersfield took advantage of flaky right-edge defence in the period before half-time.
To read the full report of the game – click here.
Huddersfield Giants 40 (22)
Tries: Russell, Jones, Leutele, Wood, Pryce, Greenwood, Peteru. Goals: Pryce 6.
Hull KR 28 (12)
Tries: Lewis, Linnett 2, Minikin, Hall, Parcell. Goals: Milnes 2