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Leeds Rhinos

2017 Super League Champions

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Leeds Rhinos 12 Huddersfield Giants 22

30th March 2012

By Leeds Rhinos

Leeds Rhinos lost out to Huddersfield Giants at Headingley Carnegie despite tries from Zak Hardaker and Kylie Leuluai for the home side.

Huddersfield seized the early initiative in the game as the camped themselves in the Leeds half for the opening ten minutes of the game. The pressure came from a combination of errors from Leeds and good defence from the Giants that penned the home side in their own half.

WP – Home MPU

The Giants went closest to scoring when Danny Brough broke clear only for a fine cover tackle from Zak Hardaker to deny the half back a scoring chance.

Leeds slowly gained a footing in the game after that and were able to build some pressure near the Giants line. Their best chance came when Paul McShane went from dummy half on the last tackle but was held up on the line.

Jones-Bishop, after an early error, was looking self assured at full back for Leeds and he produced a number of good pieces of play to get his side going forward from the back. Leeds were also looking at the cross field kick from Sinfield as a way of unlocking the Giants defence and they were unlucky when Jermaine McGillvray just got to the ball ahead of Ryan Hall in a great aerial contest.

However the kick did bring rewards soon after for Leeds. On the last tackle, Sinfield kicked from wide towards the posts and Hardaker timed his run and jump to perfection to collect the ball in midair and touch down. Sinfield converted to make it 6-0 after 22 minutes.

The Giants replied with real purpose after that and went close through Jason Chan but for a brilliant cover tackle and effort to keep the ball up as he crossed the line. Unfortunately that effort left Leeds short handed and Eorl Crabtree barged his way over. The in goal judge initially appeared to not give the try but following a discussion with referee Richard Silverwood the score was awarded. Brough added the conversion to level the score.

Huddersfield then took the lead two minutes before half time when Scott Grix cut through the Leeds defence and fed Chan for the try. Brough converted to make the half time score 12-6 to Nathan Brown’s side.

The second half got off to a poor start for the home side when Kevin Sinfield put his kick off out on the full.

Things got worse for the Champions soon afterwards when they conceded two in as many minutes. The first came from full back Greg Eden as he put himself in the right spot to collect McGillvray’s kick back infield off the wing.

Eden then turned provider as he broke through Kylie Leuluai’s tackle to race clear. He found Brough who kept a cool head before throwing the ball wide to Leroy Cudjoe who released McGillvray down the wing to score. Brough converted the first try but was wide with his second effort to give Leeds a glimmer of hope.

Debutant Stevie Ward produced two great runs to get his side going forward, the first of which include a chip and regather but unfortunately Leeds could not make the most of the opportunities.

They did finally get across the Giants line as Leuluai cut a great line to hit Sinfield’s short pass five metres out and power his way over. Sinfield added the conversion to put his side within ten points of the Giants with 12 minutes to play.

Leeds had chances to set up a grandstand finishes but they were ultimately left frustrated. Watkins took a cross field kick and chipped ahead in virtually the same movement but the Huddersfield defence managed to get back just in time to knock the ball dead.

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