Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Super 8s-Super League Round Six Review

As the play-off semis grow nearer, the Super League top four sides have been confirmed but in which order would they finish, round six saw two sides waste chances to guaranteed a top two finish as the League Leaders Shield's fate will be decided in this week's final round.

Rhinos Rueful As Cas Show Class 

Thursday's round opener saw leaders Leeds Rhinos host fifth placed Castleford Tigers at Headingley with the Tigers eager to secure an away double against the Rhinos who were hoping to end their post-Wembley woes.

A superb start for the Tigers saw Luke Gale and Denny Solomona race over for tries with both converted by Gale for a 12-0 lead inside 10 minutes. Leeds fought back with two tries in three minutes from Ryan Hall and Joel Moon with Kevin Sinfield converting both efforts to level at 12-12.

Hall crossed for a second time on 31 minutes to put the Rhinos ahead at 16-12 but Luke Dorn ensured the Tigers were level within six minutes after his try made it 16-16 into the interval.

Castleford replicated their superb start to the first half as they ran in two tires inside the first eight minutes as Gale claimed his second try ahead of an effort from Ben Roberts with Gale converting both to open up a huge 28-16 lead. Leeds hit back with a try from Adam Cuthbertson which was converted by Jordan Lilley for 28-22 but Ben Roberts secured a famous win with a 74th minute drop goal to seal a 29-22 triumph. 

Saints Stun Warriors 

Friday's televised action came from Langtree Park as St Helens hosted fierce rivals Wigan Warriors with the Warriors looking to capitalise on the Rhinos loss and go clear at the top while the Saints knew a win would set up a four-way chase for the League Leaders Shield.

A tight first 10 minutes saw both sides start well in defence but Wigan soon broke the deadlock on 13 minutes through Joel Tomkins with Matt Bowen converting for 6-0. St Helens replied with five minutes left of the first half as Luke Walsh crossed for a try and converted for 6-6 into the interval.

Wigan were back in front within five minutes of the restart as Bowen converted a penalty for 8-6 before George Williams extended the lead with a try on 52 minutes which Bowen converted for a 14-6 advantage. Adam Swift replied for the hosts just four minutes later with Walsh converting for 14-12. As the game entered the final minutes, both sides pushed for a crucial winning try but to the despair of the travelling fans, St Helens completed their comeback as Josh Jones touched down with two minutes remaining and with Walsh converting, the hosts sealed an 18-14 win.

FC Fall To Glorious Giants

Friday's second game came from the KC Stadium as Hull FC hosted top four side Huddersfield Giants with the Giants keen to boost their chances of securing the League Leaders Shield while FC looked to avoid finishing bottom of the 8s table.

The hosts started the better of the sides as Jordan Rankin opened the scoring inside five minutes for 4-0 but Huddersfield replied through Aaron Murphy with Danny Brough's conversion giving them a 6-4 lead. Jake Connor and Scott Grix extended the lead with Brough converting only the latter for 16-4. Rankin (Marc Sneyd conv) claimed his second try on 35 minutes to cut the gap to 16-10 but the Giants went into the break with an eight point advantage as Brough converted a late penalty for 18-10.

Josh Bowden (Sneyd conv) and Kirk Yeaman both crossed within eight minutes of the restart to turn the game around at 20-18 but with Connor claiming his second try on the hour, the visitors went ahead at 22-20. The Giants confirmed the win late on as in-form Jermaine McGillvary and Jamie Ellis crossed in the final minutes with Brough converting both for a 34-20 final score.  

Wonderful Wolves Demolish Dragons

The round came to a close on Saturday at the Halliwell Jones Stadium as Warrington Wolves hosted Catalans Dragons with both sides hoping to finish as high as possible after missing out on the top four.

A superb start from the Wolves saw them take a 10-0 lead inside ten minutes as Joel Monaghan and Ryan Atkins crossed for tries with Chris Sandow converting only the latter. Monaghan claimed his second on 22 minutes for 14-0 before tries from Jack Johnson and Ben Currie which were both converted by Sandow set up a 26-0 lead into the interval.

Warrington continued their onslaught with a second from Atkins on 53 minutes for 30-0 before a hat-trick try for Monaghan and second effort from Johnson were converted by Sandow and Monaghan for a huge 42-0 advantage. Catalans away form has been woeful this season and their misery continued into the final ten minutes as Richie Myler crossed for a try which was surprisingly converted by Roy Asotasi for 48-0 

The Dragons did have the final say though as they avoided a nilling after a try from Stanislas Robin with four minutes remaining with Scott Dureau converting for a 48-6 final score.