11 Jul 2021

Giants lose narrowly to Grand Finalists

Huddersfield Giants 12-16 Wigan Warriors

Huddersfield Giants (12) 12

Tries: McQueen, Cudjoe

Goals: Russell (2)

Wigan Warriors (6) 16

Tries: Marshall, Clark, Smith

Goals: Smith (2)

Huddersfield Giants: Golding; Senior, Wardle, Cudjoe, Ashall-Bott; Wood, Russell; Gavet, Peats, Yates; Jones, McQueen, Greenwood

Interchange: Hewitt, Peteru, Pryce, Stevens

Wigan Warriors: Hastings; Marshall, Gildart, Bibby, Hanley; Smith, Leuluai; Singleton, Powell, Clubb; Farrell, Pearce-Paul; Bullock 

Interchange: Byrne, Clark, O'Neill, Shorrocks

Huddersfield Giants continued their recent run of poor form with a 16-12 loss to Wigan Warriors at the DW Stadium. 

Huddersfield got off to the dream start courtesy of returning back-rower, Chris McQueen, who crossed over after an offload from Joe Greenwood to Nathan Peats, who set up the former State of Origin star. 

Oliver Russell added the extras quickly before a cross-field kick from Jake Wardle fell into the arms of the leaping Olly Ashall-Bott, who set up Leroy Cudjoe to score for the Giants second of the afternoon. Russell converted again and they would find themselves at the end of the first quarter, 12-0 to the good. 

Liam Marshall thought he had reduced the arrears for the hosts with an acrobatic finish into the corner, but the Warriors winger was found to have put a hand in touch in sync with touching the ball down, and the Giants clean sheet stretching well into the first-half continued. 

A kick around the back of the Giants back-three would allow Liam Marshall to get a lane with which to score, and this time there was no stopping the Wigan wingers from touching down. Smith converted and the Giants lead was cut in half with 2 minutes of the half remaining, and that's how they would remain going into the sheds at the half. 

Wigan put early pressure on the Giants line in the opening five minutes, forcing the ball out wide to Marshall who believed he had scored, but a pass in the build up was forward, meaning the Giants were able to relieve some pressure on their own line and take over possession. 

The pressure resumed soon after, and Mitch Clark was able to find a gap along the line and cross over to reduce the deficit, but Smith's conversion clattered against the post and the Giants retained their lead. 

Repeat penalties 3 minutes later would put further pressure on the Giants line, through repeats sets after Leroy Cudjoe, turning over the last tackle kick, was bungled into touch and a tackle later, Cudjoe got his hand to a pass intended for the Wigan winger, Liam Marshall. Eventually, after a long spell of pressure and yet another attack down the left-hand side, but it would be of no avail, and Huddersfield would receive possession of the ball.

Huddersfield would continue to be deprived of the ball throughout much of the second-half, and Wigan would finally take advantage of the large spells of possession, with a four man raiding move on the left-hand side finding Harry Smith, who scored and added the extras to give Wigan their first lead of the game, 16 minutes from full-time. 

The Giants managed to build pressure towards the end of the game, and thought they might have got the levelling try with 2 minutes left on the clock, but referee Marcus Griffiths ruled that Ashton Golding's pass to Louis Senior had travelled forwards. 

The Giants would have one final attempt with 1:45 on the clock to get themselves up the field again, and would attempt a reverse kick inside to breakdown the Warriors defence, but Wigan would see out the remaining 25 seconds and would consign the Giants to another defeat.