Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Super League Round 13 Review

The midway point of the regular season passed with this week's action marking round 13 of Super League with the six games including first against third and fourth against second with a Yorkshire derby at the bottom of the standings.

Wonderful Wolves Waste Weakened Warriors

The round opened at the Halliwell Jones Stadium which I attended for Stadium Travels as Warrington Wolves hosted Wigan Warriors with the hosts looking to open up a two point gap at the top by doubling the Warriors. Wigan struck the opening try with Josh Charnley crossing in the 17th minute for 4-0 but from there it was to be a master-class from the Wolves with Daryl Clark, Ben Westwood and Kevin Penny all crossing before half-time with Kurt Gidley converting the lot for an 18-4 lead. 

A brace from Ryan Atkins (Gidley convs) saw the lead extended to 28-4 before the hour mark leaving Wigan with a huge task to avoid a heavy defeat never mind trying to mount a comeback but any hopes were quickly erased as Benjamin Jullien crossed and Gidley converted for 34-4. John Bateman went over for Wigan to end the Wolves' spree with Matty Smith pushing the Warriors to 34-10 but the last say went to the hosts as Westwood struck a second try with Stefan Ratchford converting for a 40-10 triumph. 

Giants Glory As Leeds Lose

Friday's televised action saw a Yorkshire derby at the bottom of the table as Huddersfield Giants hosted neighbours Leeds Rhinos looking to move off the bottom with a win. The Giants made the first mark on the game as Ukuma Ta'ai crossed to make it 4-0 inside four minutes before a self-converted try from Jordan Lilley made it 6-4 to the Rhinos before Lilley added a penalty goal to set up an 8-4 lead at half-time. 

Gene Ormsby marked his final game on loan with a try on 44 minutes which Danny Brough converted for 10-8 before Josh Walters opened his account for the season with Lilley converting for 14-10. Jermaine McGillvary and Rob Burrow exchanges tries with Brough and Lilley converting for 20-16 to the Rhinos but the Giants were not to be outdone as Jake Connor (Brough conv) crossed for 22-20 before a last-gasp effort from Eorl Crabtree saw Brough convert to confirm a 28-20 success. 

Hull FC Hold On To Deny Dragons

The second top four battle of the round saw Hull FC host Catalan Dragons at the KCOM Stadium with the Dragons looking to secure an eighth consecutive win. Their hopes were dented in the first ten minutes as FC opened up a 12-0 lead with tries from Fetuli Talanoa and Curtis Naughton with Marc Sneyd converting both. Louis Anderson replied for the Dragons with Pat Richards converting for 12-6 before Sika Manu crossed and Sneyd converted before adding a penalty for 22-4. 

Richards crossed twice but was unable to convert as the hosts' lead was cut to 20-14 at the interval but a Scott Taylor try (Sneyd conv) pushed the lead to 26-14 before Jason Baitieri crossed with Richards converting for 26-20. Sneyd converted another penalty for 28-20 but the game was far from settled as Eloi Pelissier crossed with eight minutes left with Richards' conversion making it 28-26 but FC were able to hold on and thereby end the Dragons' winning streak. 

Vikings Vanquished As Wildcats Win

Friday's trio of games ended with Widnes Vikings hosting Wakefield Wildcats at the Select Security Stadium with both looking to move up the table with a win. A tight first half was more dominated by cards than points with Scott Moore and Aaron Heremaia sent off but the Wildcats did get off the mark on 35 minutes as Anthony Tupou crossed with Liam Finn converting for 6-0 before Finn added a penalty goal for an 8-0 half-time lead. 

Charly Runciman got Widnes on the board withing four minutes of the restart for 8-4 before Finn added another penalty for 10-4 but Widnes hit back again as Eamon O'Carroll scored with Rhys Hanbury converting to level at 10-10. Finn added another penalty to put the visitors 12-10 ahead before a self converted try from Hanbury saw Widnes lead for  the first time at 16-12 but the Wildcats were not to be denied as Craig Hall crossed two minutes from the end with Finn converting to seal an 18-16 win. 

Super Salford Rout Robins

Saturday afternoon saw Salford Red Devils hosting Hull Kingston Rovers with the hosts looking to bounce back from their points deduction earlier in the week which saw them lose six points for a salary cap breach. Junior Sau and Robert Lui got the hosts off to a superb start with Michael Dobson converting the latter for a 10-0 lead. Niall Evalds (Gareth O'Brien conv) extended the lead to 16-0 before a try from Maurice Blair saw Ken Sio convert for 16-6. 

Josh Griffin (Dobson conv) and Josh Jones (O'Brien conv) crossed to give the hosts a 28-6 lead at the interval which was dented on 48 minutes by Iain Thornley's effort which Sio converted for 28-12 before Sau's second made it 32-12. Sio crossed for the Robins with Blair converting for 32-18 before a Thomas Minns brace sandwiched Sau sealing his hat-trick with O'Brien converting for 38-26. The result was sealed as Lui claimed his second try with O'Brien confirming a 44-26 triumph. 

Tigers Toil As Saints Succeed

The final game of the round came on Sunday as Castleford Tigers hosted St Helens at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle with both sides looking to move up the table. The Tigers opened the scoring on 11 minutes as Joel Monaghan touched down with Luke Gale converting for a 6-0 lead which was cancelled out just six minutes later by Joe Greenwood's try and Luke Walsh's conversion for 6-6. 

Denny Solomona pushed the hosts into a 10-6 lead with a 27th minute try with Shannon McDonnell (Walsh conv) crossing just three minutes after half-time for 12-10 before Mike McMeeken (Gale conv) restored the lead for Cas at 16-12. Jy Hitchcox extended the lead to 20-12 on 51 minutes but from there, the Tigers were hit by a Saints comeback as Kyle Amor crossed before Greenwood scored his second and Jonny Lomax crossed late on with Walsh converting the lot for a 30-20 win.