26 May 2022

Giants fall short in Challenge Cup Final

Huddersfield Giants (10) 14
Tries: Leutele, McQueen, McGillvary
Goals: Lolohea
Drop-Goals:
Wigan Warriors (6) 16
Tries: Smith, Field, Marshall
Goals: Smith (2)
Drop-Goals:
Huddersfield Giants: Lolohea, McGillvary, Cudjoe, Leutele, I. Senior; Cogger, Russell; Hill, Levi, Wilson; Jones, McQueen, Yates
Interchange: English, Greenwood, Trout, Golding
Wigan Warriors: Field, French, Thornley, Bibby, Marshall; Cust, Smith; Singleton, O'Neill, Byrne; Farrell, Bateman, Smithies
Interchange: Leuluai, Mago, Ellis, Havard

Huddersfield Giants' wait for the Challenge Cup continues, as they were narrowly beaten 16-14 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, with the Giants battling valiantly in the Betfred Challenge Cup Final. 
The Giants would nudge ahead after just 119 seconds of play, after a Wigan obstruction allowed Tui Lolohea to open the scoring from the boot. Huddersfield had a significant amount of pressure in the opening quarter and as the first 20 minutes came to a close, they had their reward courtesy of Ricky Leutele, who showed enormous strength to power over the line. Lolohea was unlucky on his attempt to add the extras, his effort striking the post. 
Wigan responded well and got their rewards after 25 minutes, as Harry Smith connected with an offload to run in on the left touchline. Smith converted his try to level the scores with 14 minutes left in the first half. Huddersfield responded to the parity in the score-line with yet more pressure on the Wigan line, with Jermaine McGillvary coming agonisingly close to giving the Giants the lead again, being held up by resolute defence from the Cherry & Whites. 
The Giants would get their second try of the afternoon thanks to a wonderful run from Chris McQueen, but Tui Lolohea was unable to convert. The Giants went into the sheds for half-time in the Challenge Cup Final with a four point lead and full of hope. 
Wigan would level the game early in the second half, as Bevan French broke down the sideline and was able to set up Jai Field for the leveller. They would go ahead soon after courtesy of Harry Smith, who slotted the conversion over to give the Warriors their first lead of the game. 
Huddersfield would have to wait 20 second-half minutes to get their first score of the second period, but would be rewarded for their attacking efforts with a try courtesy of a legendary combination in the Claret & Gold - Leroy Cudjoe firing the pass out to Huddersfield-born Jermaine McGillvary. 
With the final minutes counting down, the Giants were dealt a cruel blow courtesy of Liam Marshall, who connected with a kick into the corner with just 2:20 on the clock, giving Wigan a two point lead, which is how the game would finish. Unlucky for the Giants, who gave it their all in pursuit of a first Challenge Cup in 69 years.  


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